Blood tests have a wide range of uses and are one of the most common types of medical test. For example, a blood test can be used to:
- monitor for disease prevention and modification
- assess for specific health conditions
- see how well certain organs, such as the liver and kidneys, are functioning
A blood test usually involves the phlebotomist taking a blood sample from a blood vessel in your arm where the veins are relatively close to the surface. Blood samples from children are most commonly taken from the back of the hand. The child's hand may be anaesthetised (numbed) with a special cream before the sample is taken.
You can find out more about blood tests, their purpose and the way they are performed on the NHS Choices website.