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12 October 2009

I wish your doctor would tell you.... When you are having blood work, I wish your doctor would tell you:

Unless he/she specifically states otherwise,

1. If you are having a lipid panel(cholesterol test), you need to fast for at least 8 hours. 10-12 hours is better.

2. If you are having a fasting glucose test, you must fast for 10-12 hours.

Best rule of thumb, don't eat anything for 12 hours. If you are coming in at 8am, stop eating at 8pm the night before.

Fasting means NO FOOD. This means NOTHING but water. No coffee, no tea, no soda (even if it's diet). Don't eat something "low fat" or "just a piece of apple" and decide that it won't have an effect on your tests. Anything you eat can and will have an effect on your results. If you decide you "just want to take the test anyway" even though you aren't fasting, either buck up and enjoy your Lipitor or be prepared for your doctor to want you to do the test again.

3. Odds are s/he's going to ask you to pee. Be ready.

So many people drive all the way here, only to end up having to come back because the doctor didn't explain this to them.
Agreed on all points.

My Dr. forgets to tell me ALL THE TIME. I get mine every 6 weeks so he probably thinks I don't need reminding. But it is part of HIS JOB to tell me! And that ONE TIME I had to get a urine, and he didn't tell me about it, I was dry as a bone and had to go drink something and wait FOREVER to be able to pee. And I couldn't come back another time cause I had nothing open that week so I waited a couple hours at the lab walking around the building over and again until I had to pee.

I have since learned to read the orders and remind myself.
posted by MonkeyButter 12 October | 19:59
My doc has his weak points, but that's not one of them, thank Zod.
posted by deborah 12 October | 20:41
Well SOMEONE is going to bill for the extra bloodwork that needs to be done to get valid results. You or the insurance co. (you or your employer in premiums).

It seems sloppy but my doctor can be very sloppy also.
posted by danf 12 October | 23:08
This is why I always ask.
posted by Ardiril 12 October | 23:33
My dad's clinic always has standard hand-outs for stuff like this. They seem pretty together about it.
posted by dhartung 13 October | 00:03
Yeah, the worst part is we get a lot of elderly patients who have to jump through all kinds of hoops just to get a ride to come in for their blood work, then once they get here they aren't fasting and it's a pain for them to try and reschedule transportation. Half the time the go ahead with the test out of desperation. The REALLY suck part of that is that Medicare will only pay for the lipid test once or twice a year, so if they have to come back and do it again, they pay out of pocket for it. I had an old lady cry once because she couldn't get a ride again before her doctor's appointment in a few days and was on a very tight income. I wanted to slap her doctor for putting her through that.
posted by evilcupcakes 13 October | 00:46
Following up on cupcake's comment, it drives me crazy that things like blood tests are always at some other location than your doctor. People end up having to do this crazy scavenger hunt around the city to get tests or xrays and then go back to the doctor at the first location to discuss them. You have to take three separate days off work to get one simple test done.
posted by octothorpe 13 October | 09:51
We made a poster and went to the National Equality March. || Paranoia about the swine flu vaccine