Preparing for Tests

While the majority of Pathlab tests are straightforward, there are some that require some prior preparation from you.

These include:

Your Doctor has requested a blood test that requires you to be fasting. Fasting means that you eat and drink nothing except water for 8-12 hours prior to your test.

• During your fast it is advisable to drink water to prevent dehydration but no other fluids. This includes coffee, tea, juice, alcohol, lemonade.
• Do not eat anything, this includes chewing gum and lollies (including sugar free varieties).
• Do not smoke during the fasting period.
• Continue to take any medication with water unless otherwise advised by your doctor.

Failure to follow these instructions may result in being asked to come back to the laboratory on another day to have the tests done.

24 Hour Urine
This test is to determine how much of a particular substance (e.g. calcium, protein, sodium, hormones or other products) your body passes in the urine in an exact 24 hour period. 

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 Chlamydia / Gonorrhoea Urine
To detect Chlamydia infection in the urine.

  • You must not have passed urine for at least 1 hour prior to this test being collected.   
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Cytology Urine
This test is performed to look for abnormal cells in the urine.

  • A mid morning sample is ideal.
  • A sample is collected each day for 3 consecutive days. 
 Download Preparation Information for BOP
Download Preparation Information for Waikato 

Faeces for Helicobacter Pylori
A faeces sample is collected to be tested for the presence of Helicobacter Pylori bacteria. A Helicobacter Pylori collection kit and instructions must be collected from your nearest Laboratory Collection room. Prior to collection, the following medications must be withheld:

  • Proton Pump inhibitors.
  • Bismuth Medication – e.g. Somac, Losec, Zonton and Colloidal-DeNol, Roter and Helidac.
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Faeces for Parasites, Culture, and Rotavirus
Usually performed for patients with severe diarrhoea. A faeces sample is required. A collection kit and instructions are available at your nearest Laboratory collection room.

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Glucose Tolerance Test (GTT)
This test is performed for patients who have symptoms suggesting carbohydrate metabolism, such as diabetes.

  •  A morning appointment is required and you must fast overnight for a minimum of 10 hours before the test.
  • You may drink water only during the fasting period (no other food or beverages are allowed).
  • Take your usual medication with water.
  • You must not smoke, chew gum or take part in vigorous exercise on the morning before or during the test.
  • You will be required to stay resting at the Laboratory collection room for the 2 hour duration of the test.
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Helicobacter Pylori Breath Test
The 13 C - urea breath test checks to see if an organism called Helicobacter pylori is present in your stomach. Helicobacter pylori is an important factor in stomach and duodenal ulcers. The results of this test will help your doctor decide if you require further treatment or investigations. You will need to attend your nearest collection facility to order your collection kit. The cost is $105 to be paid at time of ordering. We will contact you to arrange a suitable appointment time when your kit arrives (usually approx 2 days).

Prior to the test:

  • No antibiotics for at least 4 weeks.
  • No proton pump inhibitors for at least 14 days.
  • No H2 antagonists for 24 hours (discuss any medication queries with your doctor).
  • For a morning appointment you must not eat on the morning of your test, you may drink water only.
  • For an afternoon appointment you may have a light breakfast of tea and toast and nothing to eat for at least 3 hours prior to the appointment time.     
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Mid stream Urine
A sample of urine is collected to look for infection.

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Polycose Screen

This is a 1 hour screening test for gestational diabetes, usually requested at 24-28 weeks gestation. No appointment is necessary, but the sample is preferred to be collected in the morning. This is not a fasting test.

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Seminal Fluid
For fertility samples deliver to labs as below within one hour, keep specimen warm.  Specimens only accepted during business hours - 8am - 5pm Monday to Friday. No specimens will be processed during weekends or on statutory holidays.
Post Vasectomy samples deliver to labs as below as soon as is practically possible - ideally samples should be examing within 4 hours.
    Hamilton - Anglesea St laboratory within one hour, keep specimen warm. 
    Tauranga - Cameron Rd site entry via Hospital entrance.
    Whakatane - hospital site. 
    Taupo/Turangi - PLEASE PHONE Taupo Hospital to arrange a time to drop off sample - 07 376 1035

  • Wash your hands and penis before collection (to minimise bacteria transfer from your skin)
  • Collect the sample by masturbation (do not use any lubricant or condom)
  • Fully label the container and complete the instruction form with your name, Drs Name, date and time of collection.  
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Sputum Collection

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Quantiferon Gold Test - This is a blood test for use as an aid to diagnose Mycobacterium Tuberculosis infection, no special preparation required.  Costs will be incurred if testing is employment related.
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