FAQ Laboratory Tests

Do I need to make appointment for lab tests?
No, the laboratory is open from 8:30 am to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday to walk-ins. However if your provider has requested you to fast, you must go without food for at least 10 hours before having your blood drawn.

When can I get my lab test results?
Most tests results are available the next day. You may call your provider to discuss results. Please do not call the laboratory for your test results.

Can I work-out and exercise after my blood test?
Yes, if you plan to exercise immediately after having your blood drawn, be sure the puncture site has stopped bleeding completely.

Will it hurt to get blood drawn?
It usually only hurts when the needle is breaking the skin, and only for a few moments.  It helps not to look.

How much blood are you taking?
It depends on the number of tests your provider ordered. The smaller tubes collect 5 ml, and the large tubes about twice that.

Why are you taking more than one tube of blood?
Some tests require a specific amount of blood. A lot of tests require the use of serum, so the blood is collected in a tube where it is allowed to clot and then separated. Some tests require special anticoagulant or preservatives in the tube.

Can you take it from my finger?
Yes, but only as a last option when there is difficulty obtaining the blood from the vein in the arm. Most tests require the specimen collection from an acceptable site by venipuncture. Some tests require a specified amount of blood, drawing that volume from a fingerstick may not be feasible.

How long do I leave the bandage on?
Not very long, you may leave it on the puncture site for at least an hour as a good measure. Be sure it is no longer bleeding before you discard the band-aid or tape. Should you have concerns about the needlestick site from a blood test, be sure to check with the laboratory or with your provider.

Can you use a butterfly needle?
In very rare situations with difficult venipuncture, the butterfly needle collection kit is used.

Can I give blood today/tomorrow?
Yes, provided you pass the donor screen and requirements by the Red Cross.

What tests are being done and why?
Your provider can answer this best.

How do I pay?
Lab tests are not covered by the Health Fee. You can pay at the cashier in Medical Records with cash or check or bill to your bursar's account as a "Health Services Charge."