Various blood tests can be used to assess the general state of patient’s health, check for infections, detect diseases of certain organs such as kidneys, liver etc. They can also be used to screen genetic conditions.
Most blood tests only take a few minutes to complete and are carried out by a nurse or phlebotomist in our specially designed facilities at Northway Clinic. Your doctor will prescribe the required tests according to your symptoms. You will be advised if your tests require special preparation.
Full Blood Count (FBC)
This is a very common routine test also known as Complete Blood Count. It checks for levels of 10 different components of every major cell in human blood: red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets. A Full Blood Count test result gives an overall impression of a patient’s health status and can indicate various diseases, such as anaemia, clotting disorders, or infection.
What does a complete blood count measure?
White Blood Cells:
Neutrophils, Lymphocytes, Monocytes, Eosinophils, Basophils
Red Blood Cells
Mean Platelet Volume (MPV)
Mean Corpuscular Haemoglobin (MCH)
Mean Corpuscular Volume (MCV)
Mean Corpuscular Haemoglobin Concentration (MCHC)
Red Cell Distribution Width (RDW)
Your doctor might request a urine test to help diagnose and treat a range of conditions including kidney disorders, liver problems, diabetes and some infections. This test is also used to test for pregnancy.
Urine can be tested for particular proteins, sugars, hormones or other chemicals, certain bacteria and its acidity or alkalinity.
SMEAR TEST (CERVICAL SCREENING)
A smear test checks for changes in the cells of your cervix (the neck of the womb) that may, if not treated, develop into cervical cancer.
A smear test isn’t a test for cancer. Its aim is to check for any abnormal changes in the cells in the cervix that could lead to cancer development.
It’s important to remember that this test is for women who don’t have any symptoms of cervical cancer. If you have any symptoms you are worried about, like unusual bleeding or discharge or pain, see one of our Women’s Health specialists.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a type of scan that uses strong magnetic fields and radio waves to produce detailed images of inside the body. It can be used to examine almost any part of the body, including the brain and spinal cord, bones and joints, heart and blood vessels, and internal organs. After a consultation with one of our doctors, we can book your MRI scan at our partner clinic in central London.
An X-ray is a quick and painless way to produce images of bones and internal organs. They can be used to diagnose broken bones, tumours, lung problems, heart problems, and some cancers. After a consultation with one of our doctors, we can book your X-ray at our partner clinic in central London.
A DEXA scan is a special type of X-ray used to measure how dense your bones are. The more dense your bones are, the less likely they are to break. It is usually used to diagnose or assess the risk of osteoporosis for people over 50, or younger people with risk factors like smoking or previous broken bones. After a consultation with one of our doctors, we can book your DEXA scan at our partner clinic in central London.
FEMALE HORMONE CHECK BLOOD TESTS
Hormonal imbalances should be checked if you are planning a family and want to check reproductive hormones but also if you suffer from the following conditions: heavy, irregular, scanty or absent periods, acne or weight gain.
Our women’s health specialists might offer these tests if you have symptoms that might be related to a hormone imbalance.
By measuring FSH, LH, prolactin and oestradiol on day 3 of your cycle (3 days after the start of your period) these tests help to assess whether any hormonal issues may be affecting your ovulation.
Please note: if a patient takes hormones for contraception or hormone replacement therapy it will influence test results.
Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) is important for women in the production of eggs by the ovaries.
Luteinising Hormone (LH) is important for female fertility. It governs the menstrual cycle and it peaks before ovulation.
Testosterone is a male sex hormone that is also produced in smaller amounts in the ovaries of women. It is responsible for energy, mood, sexual function as well as muscle and bone strength. In women, raised testosterone can result in body hair, greater bulk, a deeper voice and acne – all symptoms of polycystic ovaries.
Sex Hormone-Binding Globulin (SHBG) binds with certain hormones that means that they are unavailable to cells. Level of SHBG in blood gives important information about your levels of ‘free’ biologically active or unbound hormones. If person’s SHBG levels are imbalanced it can cause either high or low levels of testosterone and oestradiol.
Oestradiol is a type of oestrogen that is the main female sex hormone. It is critical for egg production, protects against bone loss, and helps regulate cholesterol levels. With age, oestradiol levels fall so low levels can be an indication of menopause. Imbalanced oestrogen can cause irregular periods, general fatigue, headaches, hot flushes, sleep disorders, anxiety, depression, low libido, and worsening premenstrual syndrome (PMS).
Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) stimulates the thyroid gland to produce thyroid hormones Thyroxine (T4) and Triiodothyronine (T3). Unhealthy thyroid causes hormonal imbalances that can lead to symptoms like weight gain or loss, fatigue, anxiety, depression and sleep problems.
Free thyroxine (FT4) test is used to help evaluate thyroid function and diagnose thyroid diseases, including hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism. It is usually advised after discovering that the TSH level is abnormal.
Prolactin is important for both male and female reproductive health. Its primary purpose is to stimulate milk production after childbirth. High levels in a woman who isn’t pregnant or breastfeeding can indicate fertility problems and irregular periods.
Anti-Mullerian Hormone (AMH) is a protein hormone produced by granulosa cells of growing follicles in the ovaries. AMH levels can help to assess ovarian egg reserve, in other words, it defines the quantity but not the quality of follicles in the ovaries. It can also be used as a PCOS marker. The ovarian reserve is a strong indicator of the infertility treatment outcome.
Beta Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (bHCG) is a hormone produced by the placenta during pregnancy and can be detected in the blood. A bHCG test is a blood test commonly used to detect pregnancy and usually becomes positive at the time of the first missed menstrual cycle.
Antibody testing can detect if a person has developed an immune response to COVID-19, either because of past infection or because they have had the vaccine. Antibody tests cannot diagnose current infection and not everyone will develop an antibody response to COVID-19 infection or vaccination.
COVID-19 Antibody Tests
At Northway Clinic we offer 3 different antibody tests
- COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2) Roche Elecsys Anti-SARS-CoV-2 S (SPIKE) – This is the test to have if you want to check the amount of antibodies you have after vaccination. It can also show the amount of antibodies after infection. It will show a positive or negative result, and give the quantity of antibodies detected. A blood sample is sent to the laboratory and you will usually receive your results by email 24 hours after having the test.
- COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2) Roche Elecsys Anti-SARS-CoV-2 Total Antibody – This test is only for after infection. Some people will develop antibodies to both the spike RBD and nucleocapsid and some people will not develop any antibodies at all. It will show a positive or negative result. You can combine this test with the SPIKE test for a comprehensive overview of your immune response after infection. A blood sample is sent to the laboratory and you will usually receive your results by email 24 hours after having the test.
- INSTANT TEST – The test we use is a NADAL® COVID-19 IgG/IgM Rapid Test which is legal for use by healthcare professionals in the UK. You will receive your results 10-20 minutes after providing your sample. A healthcare professional will take a blood sample for the test. The test we use shows a sensitivity of 97.4% for IgG antibodies and 86.8% for IgM antibodies and a specificity of 99.3% for IgG and 98.6% for IgM. It is less accurate than a laboratory test but gives a quicker result. Test results must be interpreted by a healthcare professional in conjunction with all available clinical information.
What are COVID-19 antibodies?
Antibodies are part of the immune system. They help the body to recognise harmful substances (like viruses) and mount an immune response to remove the harmful substance from the body. There are many different types of antibodies.
After infection with COVID-19, you may have detectable antibodies to both the nucleocapsid (N) and the spike protein receptor binding domain (RBD). Antibody tests for both nucleocapsid and RBD antigens can be helpful to identify if you have been previously infected with SARS-CoV-2. It is not yet known if having a positive antibody test after infection with SARS-CoV-2 means you will be protected, either fully or partially, from future infection or for how long protective immunity may last.
After vaccination against SARS-CoV-2, with no history of natural infection, the antibodies you develop are to the spike protein receptor binding domain.
When should you get an antibody test?
Antibody testing should be performed 14 days or more after the first day you had symptoms, known exposure to COVID-19, or you had the 2nd dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Remember you will have to self-isolate for 10 days if you have tested positive for COVID-19.
Why should you get an antibody test?
It is not yet known if having antibodies will protect you from getting COVID-19 completely, or at all. Antibody tests are useful to find out how many people have had COVID-19, if the vaccination has produced an immune response, and how long antibody levels last (if you have repeat tests).
How is the antibody test done?
You will have to attend Northway Clinic and have a blood sample taken by a trained healthcare professional. This will be sent to the laboratory for analysis and the results usually take about 24 hours to come back.
How accurate is the Spike Antibody Test?
The Anti SARS CoV-2 S (Spike) Total Antibody test has 99.8% sensitivity and 98.8% specificity for SARS-Cov-2 in samples taken 14 days or more after a positive PCR test.
How much does a Spike Antibody Test cost?
The test costs £62 which includes the cost of the appointment and laboratory analysis cost.
How do I book a COVID-19 antibody test?
|Full Blood Count||£40|
|Finger-prick Cholesterol Test||£20|
|Finger-prick Glucose Test||£20|
|Smear Test (Cervical Screening)PAPT and HPV||£170|
|Follicle Stimulating Hormone FSH||£45|
|Luteinising Hormone (LH)||£45|
|Sex Hormone-Binding Globulin (SHBG)||£55|
|Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH)||£45|
|Free thyroxine (FT4)||£45|
|Anti-Mullerian Hormone (AMH)||£110|
|Beta Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (bHCG)||£50|
|MRI Scan (One Area)||£400|
|MRI Scan (Two Areas)||£650|
|MRI Scan (Three Areas)||£900|
|MRI Scan (Four Areas)||£1150|
|X-Ray (two views)||£150|