Blood tests are an essential component of a well-rounded physical health regimen. It’s not uncommon to be asked to provide a blood sample as part of your yearly physical, but they may be more frequent for you. Your doctor may also order blood tests to evaluate specific conditions.
If you’re experiencing unusual or prolonged symptoms, are looking to fine-tune your nutrition plan, or want to be proactive about catching the warning signs of just about anything, then blood work is the way to go. But the information from your blood test is only as valuable as your understanding of the results. This is why it’s important to know what your results mean. Follow our complete guide to understanding your bloodwork results!
What You Should Know First
Being proactive is especially important whenever you encounter the unfamiliar. If you’ve never gotten blood work done before or you’re looking for a quick refresh, here’s a brief overview of what you can expect to see, do, and hear.
A successful blood test begins as the healthcare professional firmly places a tourniquet around your arm. They continue by inserting a hollow needle into a vein and drawing the necessary volume of blood. The process only takes about 5 to 10-minutes and is finished by bandaging the puncture site.
How long the results take to come in can depend on the type of tests that are being performed. The results of a complete blood count, basic metabolic panel, or lipid panel test could be in as little as 24-hours. Whereas a complete metabolic panel test is a bit more comprehensive, and usually requires anywhere between one and three days.