Test Preparation

Prior to visiting LabCorp, you may want to ask your physician the following questions:

  • What test is being performed?
  • Why does the test need to be done?
  • What type of specimen is needed for testing (blood, saliva, urine, semen, stool, hair)?
  • When can I expect to hear about my test results?
  • How will the test results affect the course of my care?

Sometimes special preparation is required to improve the accuracy of a test. This may involve:

  • Fasting (not eating any or certain foods) for several hours or even overnight
  • Drinking more or less water than usual
  • Avoiding certain medications or vitamin and herbal supplements prior to testing

If you are delivering a specimen to the lab, there might be special instructions for transporting the specimen. Your physician should provide you with written instructions for preparing for your test. Follow those instructions exactly as they are written. If you are not certain if special preparation is required, or if you have questions about the instructions you were given, contact your physician’s office.

If you did not follow the test preparation instructions you received from your physician, let the staff at the specimen collection lab know about this before your specimen is collected.

You can visit the American Association for Clinical Chemistry's Lab Tests Online website to review additional tips to help you prepare for laboratory testing.