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Home > Patients and Individuals  >  Preparation and Tips  >  Before My Test

Before My Test

Where can I have my laboratory tests performed?

Our Laboratory and Health Services Centre Locator can help you easily find the centre most convenient for you. The locator also provides hours of operation, telephone numbers and a map showing the location of your requested centre. 
 

What questions should I ask my healthcare provider before having the test?

 Before you visit a Laboratory and Health Services Centre for your test, ask your healthcare provider what test is being performed, why the test needs to be done, what you might need to do to prepare for the test, what you can expect the procedure to be like. You may also want to ask when you can expect to hear about your test results, and how the test results will affect the course of your care. If you’d like direct access to your results, sign up for Dynacare Plus if you're a Quebec resident, or myLabWorks if your tests have been ordered by your insurance company. 

Do I need an appointment for my test?

 Most visits to our Laboratory and Health Services Centres do not require appointments. But in most cases you will need an appointment for the following tests:
  • Oral Glucose Tolerance Tests (GTTs)
  • Lactose and Xylose Tolerance Tests
  • Holter Monitoring (Ontario only)
  • Urea Breath Tests for Helicobacter Pylori
  • Breath Alcohol Testing
  • US Department of Transportation (DOT) urine procedures
  • Ultrasound imaging (Roxboro, Quebec)
  • Spermogram (Quebec)
 
To schedule an appointment, contact the lab closest to you. Find a Health and Laboratory Services Locator near you. 

Do I need to do anything special to prepare for my test?  Can I eat before the test?

 For your physician to accurately interpret your results on certain tests, you might be asked to not eat any foods or drink any liquids for several hours or even overnight. In addition to fasting, you might be requested to avoid stimulants such as caffeine or nicotine, physical activity or specific foods that can affect clinical results.
 
It is recommended that you fast (no food, including chewing gum, or drink other than water) for the following tests:
 
10- to 12-hour fast
  • ACTH (Adrenocorticotropic Hormone)
  • Bile Acids
  • C-peptide
  • Carotene
  • Cortisol fasting
  • Free Fatty Acids
  • Ghrelin
  • Lactic Acid
  • Lipoprotein Subfractionation
  • Proinsulin
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin E  
8-hour fast
  • Ammonia
  • Catecholamines
  • Cholesterol (lipids) (if determined by physician)
  • Glucagon
  • Glucose
  • Oral Glucose Tolerance (GTT) (12 hrs Saskatchewan)
  • Homocysteine
  • Insulin
  • Lactose Tolerance
  • Thiamine
  • Xylose Absorption  
4-hour fast
  • H. Pylori
  • Plasma Metanephrines  

What should I take with me to the Laboratory and Health Services Centre?

 When visiting a Laboratory and Health Services Centre, you should bring the following with you:
  • A completed and signed test requisition form from the healthcare professional who requested the test
  • Your provincial health card
  • If requested by your healthcare provider, any specimens that you were required to collect at home.  

I have been asked to collect a specimen at home and to take it to a Dynacare Laboratory and Health Services Centre. What procedure should I follow? 

If you have been asked to collect a specimen at home, visit the Prepare Your Test section of this site and follow the instructions for your particular test. 

Do you have any special services for patients who cannot come to the lab for their tests? 

In some areas, Dynacare offers house call collection services for elderly and other patients in long-term care facilities or who may be confined to their homes. This service is available at the request of a healthcare provider.