A blood test is when a sample of blood is taken for testing in a laboratory. They allow doctors identify a diagnosis and follow up on certain conditions. Each blood test is for a specific problem and there is no ‘general blood test’.
A blood test usually involves the phlebotomist taking a blood sample from a blood vessel in your arm and the usual place for a sample is the inside of the elbow or wrist, where the veins are relatively close to the surface.
Blood samples from children are most commonly taken from the back of the hand. The child’s hand will be anaesthetised (numbed) with a special cream before the sample is taken.
You can find out more about blood tests, their purpose and the way they are performed on the NHS Choices website.
Please allow at least 3 working days before telephoning for blood test results.