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51 Seminary Avenue
Reading, PA 19605

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Preparing for Blood Tests - More Than Just Fasting

reporting all medications to your doctor before blood testsA new survey reveals Americans are not aware of what to report prior to a blood test. Only half (52 percent) believe it is very important to report use of supplements to their healthcare provider before getting a blood test.

With recent interest in the use of supplements like biotin as beauty treatments, it’s especially critical for consumers, doctors and lab personnel to talk before blood tests because very high doses of supplements could interfere with some test results.

The possibility of interference in blood testing is low, but if you’re taking high-dose biotin for hair, skin or nail health, for example, it is best to inform your doctor before a blood test. Just as you may need to fast before certain types of tests, you may need to hold off on taking supplements like biotin for at least eight hours before blood work.

The survey, commissioned by Roche Diagnostics, also found that most Americans (85 percent) expect their physician to provide complete instructions on how to prepare for a blood test.

“Many factors — from stress, to prescription medication, to vitamins — can affect blood test results, so it’s important to be proactive in communicating about medicines or supplements you’re taking rather than waiting to be asked,” said Dr. Emily Jungheim, associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

Ask your healthcare provider about ways to prepare for blood tests. Here are some simple tips to follow:

  • Write down all your prescription medicines the night before a blood test so you can share up-to-date information with the lab technician or your doctor.
  • Also report vitamins, supplements, nutraceuticals and any over-the-counter medications.
  • Know the doses of the medicines and supplements you are taking. The dose matters. You may not be aware that 5 mg of biotin per day, for example, is equal to the amount of biotin in 100 capsules of a typical daily multivitamin.

About Sacred Heart Villa

The Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ created Sacred Heart Villa (formerly St. Michael Convent) in 2003 with the vision of providing a personal care home for the Sisters and other seniors of southeastern Pennsylvania. The Sisters renovated St. Michael in order to create 35 personal care residential rooms. Sacred Heart Villa officially opened her doors to her first new residents in May 2004, with space for 57 Sisters and 40 other senior residents.  The facility has two residential buildings, a remodeled dining room, a new fireside lounge, library, café and beauty shop. The chapel remains in the middle of the facility for it truly is the Heart of the community. Each new residential room provides an individual with privacy, safety and security in an environment of beauty and grace. Mass is celebrated each day, and is open to the public.

Sacred Heart Villa is accepting new residents. If you are seeking care for yourself or loved one, contact Sacred Heart Villa today at 610-929-5751 for a tour. You can also visit http://sacredheartvillapa.org. or visit us at http://www.sacredheartvillapa.org/.