Does urgent care do blood work?
One of the best ways to keep track of your overall health and well-being is by getting regular blood tests done. Not only do blood tests allow your doctor to follow any changes to your health over time, but it also allows you to be proactive about areas of your health that may be at risk for certain diseases.
So how often should you get blood work done and what exactly can you find out with blood tests? We’re sharing what you need to know so you can feel empowered about your health.
What does a blood test show?
Blood tests are often performed as a way to show your doctor the overall health and function of your organs. The thyroid, liver and kidneys are all organs whose malfunctions can be visible in a blood test.
You may also need to do a blood test to check for markers of certain diseases and health conditions like diabetes, anemia, cancer, coronary heart disease and HIV. Lab work can also show if someone is at risk of developing heart disease, even if they don’t have it yet.
Can you get a blood test at urgent care?
One of the best places to get blood tests done is at an urgent care facility. Because urgent care clinics are designed for convenient care, you can get your lab work done and get back on with your day quickly.
At CareNow®, many lab tests are performed on-site so you can receive a quick diagnosis and treatment. In some instances, your tests may need to be sent to a reference lab and may take 24 hours to get results back.
Some of the lab tests we offer at CareNow® include:
- A1C (glucose)
- Albumin test
- Alkaline phosphate test
- ALT screen
- Amylase test
- Arsenic blood test
- Basic / comprehensive metabolic profile
- Calcium test
- Cholesterol test
- Complete blood count
- C-reactive protein
- Creatinine test
- Drug screen: hair
- Follicle-stimulating hormone
- Hemoglobin / hematocrit
- Lead blood test
- Luteinizing hormone
- Mercury blood test
- Prostate specific antigen
- ProTime INR
- Rheumatoid factor
- Stool blood test
- Thyroid panel
- Thyroid stimulating hormone
- Uric acid
- Urinalysis (microscopic)
- Urine microalbumin
- Blood pressure test
- Audiometry screenings
- DOT physical
Learn more about medical tests offered
How often do you need routine blood work?
The regularity of your physical exams is dependent on your age. As you get older, you should see your doctor more regularly. Here’s a breakdown of how often you should get a physical exam at various ages:
- Ages 18 to 39: at least every 5 years
- Ages 40 to 49: at least every 2 to 3 years
- Ages 50 and older: every 1 to 2 years
- It’s a good idea to talk to your doctor at any routine exam about whether you need any blood tests done.
Typically, it’s recommended that you get a lipid test, which is used to monitor and screen for your risk of cardiovascular disease, done at age 20 and then every five years following that (as long as your risk of heart disease is low). If your risk of cardiovascular disease is high, you may need more frequent testing done.
What is the process for blood tests?
The actual process of getting your blood drawn is quite quick. You will be asked to sit in a seat while a nurse or technician cleans the area on your arm where they’ll be drawing the blood from.
A rubber band will be tied around your upper arm to help create more visible and easily accessible veins. You may be asked to make a fist to help pump even more blood through the veins.
The needle, which is attached to an empty tube, will be gently inserted into your vein while the blood is drawn and flows into the tube. This typically takes anywhere from five to 10 minutes.
Once enough blood has been collected, the nurse or technician will remove the needle from your skin and the rubber band from your arm. The drawing site will then be covered with either a bandage or medical tape.
You may be asked to stay seated for a few minutes to ensure you don’t feel lightheaded or dizzy.
How long does blood work take?
The amount of time it takes to get your results back depends on the type of blood test you need. Some test results can take a few hours, while others may take a few days. A complete blood count, basic metabolic panel, and lipid panel all take 24 hours in most cases, while a complete metabolic panel takes 72 hours.
Do you need to fast for blood work?
Because many tests measure things that can be affected by what you eat and drink, you may be asked to fast for your blood work. Vitamins, proteins and other nutrients found in food and drink can impact the related levels in your blood to spike or drop, even temporarily, which can provide inaccurate lab results.
If you’re having any of the following tests done, you will likely be asked to fast for eight to 12 hours before your appointment:
- Blood sugar tests
- Kidney function tests
- Basic metabolic panel
- Cholesterol tests
- Liver function tests
Does CareNow® do TB testing?
If you suspect you may have been exposed to tuberculosis, it’s critical that you get tested as soon as possible. There are two types of tuberculosis tests offered at CareNow®: a skin test and a blood test.
With a skin test, a small amount of fluid is injected into the skin on the lower part of your arm. You will be asked to return 48 to 72 hours later so the physician can check your skin for a reaction.
Can you request a blood test?
It’s important to know that you have the power to request a routine or non-routine blood test at any time. Common routine blood tests include a complete blood count, thyroid panel, basic metabolic panel and a nutrient test.
Whether you need a routine exam and bloodwork done or you have a specific medical concern, consider visiting your local CareNow® location. Each of our more than 175 clinics is open after hours and on the weekend so you can get the care you need when you need it.
We’re also proud to have earned the distinction of Accredited Urgent Care Center from our industry’s association, Urgent Care Association (UCA).
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