Fasting for Blood Work: Everything You Need to Know

Jan 4, 2022

If you need to get blood work, you might feel nervous about fasting beforehand. But there’s no cause for concern – your laboratory and your healthcare provider can provide straightforward, easy-to-follow instructions on preparing for your blood draw. Here, TOPLAB® outlines the fasting process and some recommendations to ensure that your appointment goes smoothly.

Blood Tests: A Routine Healthcare Tool

Blood tests are a helpful tool for diagnosing and evaluating patient health. A blood test can help your healthcare provider check things like thyroid function or cholesterol levels. Blood tests can assist doctors in accurately diagnosing certain diseases or assuring a patient’s medication is working as it should. If your doctor has ordered a blood test for you, they may draw your blood onsite or send you to an offsite laboratory for your test.

Follow Your Healthcare Provider’s Instructions

You’ll receive instructions from your doctor’s office or from the laboratory on how to prepare for your test. Often, blood draws are scheduled early in the morning, so patients can fast while they are asleep. For many routine blood tests, you’ll be required to stop eating and drinking at midnight on the night before your test. Sometimes, you can continue to drink water the following day, but you can’t eat a meal or drink other beverages.

If you take prescription medications, ask your doctor if you should continue your normal dosage, or avoid your medication on the day of your test. For certain tests, you may be required to fast for a longer period. Your doctor also may recommend abstaining from alcohol for up to 24 hours before your blood draw.

Come to Your Appointment Prepared

On the day of your appointment, make sure to arrive a few minutes early to get signed in and provide your insurance information if needed. The laboratory staff will be available to answer any questions you have. A lab technician will draw your blood sample in a sterile environment. After your appointment, you can resume normal activities and return to work or school as needed.

You may want to bring something to eat and drink with you. When you’ve been fasting for several hours, your blood sugar may be a bit low, so it’s helpful to have a snack on hand. You can resume your normal diet once your appointment is complete.

You should receive the results of your test within a few days. Your doctor may contact you to help explain your results and the implications for your overall health.

Learn More About Blood Screening Services at TOPLAB®

Once you know more about fasting for blood work, you’ll feel more prepared for your lab appointment. If you’re looking for a convenient way to get a routine blood test, TOPLAB® offers full laboratory services throughout New Jersey and nationwide. We provide a full range of blood screening services, including:

  • Allergy tests
  • Complete blood count (CBC)
  • Hormone balance
  • Metabolic counts
  • Wellness panel

To learn more about our comprehensive lab testing services, contact TOPLAB® today.