Blood tests

Blood tests are analysed in laboratories where they can look out for any infections and to assess if your organs are functioning as they should be.

Diagnosis using blood tests

A blood test is taken so that the blood can be analysed in the laboratory. It is usually used to look for a bacterial or viral infection, or to see how certain body organs are currently functioning, such as the liver or kidneys.

It is a simple procedure where a special needle is inserted, usually into the crook of the elbow, and an amount of blood is extracted into a small bottle by a nurse. The contents are then sent off to be analysed and the results sent to your consultant.

What to expect during a blood test

You will usually require little or no preparation for the test but, in some instances, your doctor may request a period of fasting ahead of the test. This means you may need to have nothing but a small amount of water from bedtime the night before the test. However, you will be advised of this when the test is booked.

It is the most routine test that is performed and once the blood is taken, a small dressing is applied to the place where the blood is taken to help prevent any bleeding and bruising. Very occasionally people may feel faint or dizzy during or after the test so you are monitored for a short period after the blood has been taken whilst the dressing is applied. If this is the case, please tell the person performing the test.

Meet our doctors

Everything we do is focused on designing better care for our patients.

With a network of 14 specialist oncology treatment centres across the UK, we provide the most up-to-date treatments and technology as standard. We attract and retain some of the most experienced doctors in the country, who all have a passion for improving patient outcomes and specialise in the treatment of different types of cancer.

Meet our doctors

Search for a centre near you

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Little Aston Hall Drive, Sutton Coldfield, B74 3BF

+44 (0)121 353 3055


300 Park Avenue, Aztec West, Bristol, BS32 4SY

01454 456500


Fordham Rd, Newmarket CB8 7XN, UK

+44 (0)1223 907 600


Springfield Cancer Centre, Lawn Lane, Chelmsford, CM1 7GU

+44 (0)1245 987 901

Cromwell Hospital

164-178 Cromwell Rd, Kensington, London SW5 0TU, UK

0203 848 0900


Unit 710, Centennial Park, Centennial Avenue, Elstree, Borehamwood, WD6 3SZ

+44 (0)208 236 9040


BMI St Martha Oncology Centre, 46 Harvey Road, Guildford, GU1 3LX

+44 (0)1483 806 000


17 Kings Hill Avenue, Kings Hill, West Malling, ME19 4UA

+44 (0)1732 207 000

Milton Keynes

Sunrise Parkway, Linford Wood East, Milton Keynes, MK14 6LS

+44 (0)1908 467 700


The Park Centre for oncology, Sherwood Lodge Drive, Burntstump Country Park, Nottingham, NG5 8RX

+44 (0)1158 077 400


Peters Way, Sandy Lane West, Oxford, OX4 6LB

+44 (0)1865 237 700


Bartons Road, Havant, PO9 5NA

+44 (0)23 9248 4992


Spire Hospital, Chalybeate Close, Southampton, SO16 6UY

+44 (0)381 277 900


69 Alma Road, Windsor, SL4 3HD

+44 (0)1753 418 444