Monday - Friday
8am - 4pm
8am - 3pm
8am - 12 noon
Monday - Friday
8am - 4pm
7am - 3pm
8am - 12 noon

Gretna Medical Center

315 Westbank Expressway
Gretna, LA 70053
Phone:(504) 364-1844


Blood Testing

Gretna Medical Center in the New Orleans area offers a wide range of blood testing services. We have an on-site laboratory that reduces wait times and prices.

Vaccinations Available

How do I prepare for a blood test?

Preparation for a blood test usually depends on the type of test being performed. Some tests will require you to fast 8 hours before and these test typically include lipid panels, glucose, and stool tests. During a fast, avoid all foods including coffee and tea with the exception of water. Drinking water is encouraged and highly vital for blood work. Being well hydrated allows the blood to draw faster and smoother. Be sure to consult your physician if your test requires you to fast.

What happens during a blood test?

  • Usually, blood will be drawn from a vessel in your arm since the arm is a convenient part of the body that can be covered. Typical spots on the arm include the wrist and inside the elbow where the veins are closest to the surface.
  • Prior to drawing blood, a doctor or nurse will prep the site with an antiseptic wipe and a band is usually wrapped around the upper arm. The band squeezes the arm to slow down the flow of blood and cause the vein to swell, making it easier for a sample to be taken.
  • With preparations in place, a needle attached to a syringe is inserted into the vein to draw out a sample. There is a slight prick feeling or sensation as the needle breaks the skin but it is not painful. After the syringe is filled with a sample, the needle will be removed and pressure is applied to the skin for a few minutes using a cotton-wool pad.

What happens after a blood sample is taken?

  • Usually there are no side effects. In rare cases, some people might feel dizzy or faint. If this happens to you, inform the person that took the test so that they can conform you.
  • Samples are then taking to the lap which is on site for you to receive your results, often times on the same day. This will depend on the test being conducted.


What can you detect from a blood test?

  • This depends on the test being ordered. A test will look for markers to provide information that can help evaluate a person’s health. A blood test can discover bacteria, proteins, antigens, and various other substances or infections. Some tests can even detect cancer. Hormones can be measured to determine if glands or organ systems are functioning properly. Performing a regular blood test can help determine your overall health.
  • Being screened regularly is essential to determine overall health by catching an abnormality at the most treatable stages, early.


What are the benefits of regular blood testing?

Regular blood testing is the most significant practice to record critical changes in the body before they transform into an illness. The blood tests are a science-based disease prevention program that can prolong life if done regularly. More benefits involve being able to correct mental depression, cardiovascular diseases abdominal obesity, erectile dysfunction, and memory improvement. Below are the most important blood tests that people, especially aging adults should take every year.



What is the hemoglobin A1C test? Why is it done?


What is the chemistry panel and complete blood count (CBC) test? Why is it done?

It is the best program test to start your disease prevention program since it gives you a quick snapshot on the whole body health. It detects a wide array of diseases including leukemia. It tests Platelets, and White blood cells. Other components include Hemoglobin, Hematocrit, and Red blood cells. Abnormal increase and decrease in cell counts may reveal an underlying medical condition.

  • CBC is done for many reasons including reviewing your overall health as a routine medical checkup, to diagnose a medical condition if the signs and symptoms are not enough to determine what the disease is, and to keep an eye on a medical condition if you have a disease that affects blood cell count. Lastly, it is done to monitor medical treatment if you are placed on medication affecting blood cell count.
  • The test provides cardiovascular system information by testing for overall cholesterol. This involves LDL test (low-density lipoprotein), HDL test (high-density lipoprotein), and cholesterol to HDL ratio. Also, Complete Blood Count test blood glucose to critically determine early stages of coronary artery disease, diabetes, and metabolic syndrome. The Chemistry Panel critically assesses calcium, potassium, and iron minerals. Monitoring your fasting glucose level is very important with the current epidemic of diseases.
  • Chemistry Panel is not typically a definitive diagnostic test, and it depends on the reason your doctor recommends it. The CBC results should be compared alongside additional blood tests to diagnose a disease. Results outside the normal range may or may not be of concern depending on your doctor’s findings.


What is the fibrinogen test?

  • This test is used in detecting levels of fibrinogen coagulation factor (factor 1) of acquired or congenital origin. Fibrinogen levels are useful in predicting heart disease and atherosclerosis since it is associated with tissue inflammation. High fibrinogen levels are found in inflammatory disorders such as glomerulonephritis (kidney inflammation), rheumatoid arthritis, and stroke. Fibrinogen test determines the extent of inflammation in the body. Blood levels of fibrinogen and similar acute phase reactants rise abruptly to cause inflammation.
  • The University of Hong Kong Medical Center published a study revealing that high level of fibrinogen is an independent factor for mortality in peripheral arterial disease persons. In a study carried out in 2005 on 140 patients with peripheral arterial disease showed that only 80 % of patients with increased fibrinogen level above 340mg/dl survived death for only three years. Further and recent studies have linked increased fibrinogen with venous thrombosis and presence of multiple coronary lesions. This was mostly observed in patients who had encountered acute myocardial infarction earlier. Subsequent studies have proven high level of fibrinogen to be the associated with these conditions.
Fibrinogen tests when converted into solutions for comparison with fibrinogen antigen results. A significant decrease in fibrinogen activity may be associated with dysfunctional fibrinogen. This may also be due to an inherited condition called afibrinogenemia or acquired condition such as severe malnutrition or last stages of liver disease. Acute low levels of fibrinogen activity are related to disseminated intravascular coagulation especially when the body is overactive in getting rid of blood clots.



What do you test for?

  • Blood Draws on Site
  • Comprehensive Metabolic Panels
  • HIV testing
  • Influenza A&B testing
  • Diabetes Testing
  • Cholesterol Testing
  • Strep Test
  • Urinalysis to diagnose urinary infection or blood in urine
  • GC/Chlamydia and full STD panel
  • Employer drug and alcohol testing
  • and more.


Open 7 days a week. Walk-in patients are welcome.

Fax: (504) 367-6022

315 Westbank Expressway Gretna, LA 70053

Business Hours
Monday - Saturday
7am - 5pm
7am - 12 noon
Gretna Medical Center