Fasting blood test for Rheumatoid Arthritis

this is a question for my hubby who is having tests for RA. I was diagnosed with it 10yrs ago and was never asked to do a fasting one. Not sure why he has been asked to do one , he has already had loads of other blood tests .

12 Replies

  • It does seem odd. My current rheumy ordered cholesterol tests once I became his patient, so clearly some do look at overall health. But that was long after my PsA diagnosis.

    Has your husband had the test yet? Because asking at the time would be the quickest way to find out. Or he could phone his GP.

  • The rheumatologist consultant requested it , but our GP surgery rang him to book him in to have it done. I'm just flummoxed why he requested it.

  • My GP printed out my shared care agreement between him and my rheumy which says cholesterol should be measured at beginning of investigations/diagnosis. I expect this is what he has to fast for. Fasting is 12-14 hours, water only for cholesterol/lipids, 9 hours water only for glucose (I work in a path lab). Has he been given any instructions? Sometimes they take the opportunity to do extra tests if you're going to be bled anyway :-)

  • I remember having a fasting blood test - mine was for a cholesterol base value before starting on a biological treatment. Farm

  • All my blood tests are fasting tests. If he is having an iron test then don't take any supplement 24 hours before, leave at least 8 hours for eating if having glucose or lips tests and only drink water as substances in teas and coffees can alter test results. The rest, as far as I am aware, do not need to be fasting but I choose to do so because then I know my test are 'true' results and not possible clouded by food/drink substances.


  • I was diagnosed abroad & my first tests weren't fasting but when I received the details of my first Rheumy appointment included was a lab blood test request form for the week prior to the appointment which requested I had fasting ones for uric acid & cholesterol levels. Possibly one or both of these? I would say it would be a good idea if he asks the nurse what it's for when he goes to have it done then he knows for another time, often it's expected we know if it's necessary to fast or not if they're requested again. I'd be interested to know though if it's not one that it suggested.

  • Thank you all very much for your very fast replies. They have really helped and put my mind at rest some what. The blood tests are for a week before he sees the consultant for the results of all his previous tests, ( blood, water works and X-Rays) he has been put on steroids in the mean time, which is a bit of a worry. He also has COPD. Thank you again.

  • Not sure why you're worried about short-term steroids (unless they aren't good for people with COPD or something). Most of us have been there I'm sure and they can give so much relief at a difficult time.

  • They have helped a lot, in fact his swollen hands and fingers went down within a few hours. It was more the fact he will have taken them for a month before he sees the consultant again, but I'm sure they now what is best.

  • I think most people would agree that a month is no biggie. So glad to hear he's feeling better. Hope his appointment goes well.

  • Thank you, you have put my mind at rest. You have all helped a lot. I will post again when he has been back to see the consultant.

  • They may want to check on his cholesterol and blood sugar levels at the same time..... tests worth having for everyone over a certain age regularly as routine

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