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How long does it take for a CBC test to process?

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As a former Air Force Lab Tech, I can tell you that the test itself is very quick. A big machine sucks up a small amount of blood, and a few minutes (if that these days) later the machine has performed the Cell Blood Count multiple times and has averaged the numbers and spit out the results. At the small hospital I worked at, an emergency room request for a CBC could be turned around within 15 minutes. One of the benefits of a CBC is that the blood comes from a test tube with a solution in it to keep it from clotting and the whole blood is used for the test. Chemistry results (sodium/potassium/etc) require some spin time to get all blood cells seperated from the plasma. Back to your question though, it depends on how many layers exist between you and your result. If this is from a regular lab visit, your blood will be collected in a batch to be run in succession at a later date. But then again, the test itself may not be performed where you had your blood drawn! Some clinics send ... more
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As a former Air Force Lab Tech, I can tell you that the test itself is very quick. A big machine sucks up a small amount of blood, and a few minutes (if that these days) later the machine has performed the Cell Blood Count multiple times and has averaged the numbers and spit out the results. At the small hospital I worked at, an emergency room request for a CBC could be turned around within 15 minutes. One of the benefits of a CBC is that the blood comes from a test tube with a solution in it to keep it from clotting and the whole blood is used for the test. Chemistry results (sodium/potassium/etc) require some spin time to get all blood cells seperated from the plasma. Back to your question though, it depends on how many layers exist between you and your result. If this is from a regular lab visit, your blood will be collected in a batch to be run in succession at a later date. But then again, the test itself may not be performed where you had your blood drawn! more
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