A haemoglobin test measures the amount of haemoglobin present in your blood. Haemoglobin is a protein molecule of iron in your red blood cells that is responsible for carrying oxygen from your lungs to your body’s tissues (and carries carbon dioxide from your body’s tissues back to your lungs). Haemoglobin is what gives blood it’s red colour. The amount of iron in your bloodstream is essential for the normal functioning of your body.
Haemoglobin levels vary from person to person but should lie within a particular range. If the haemoglobin test reveals that your count is lower than this range then you may have a low red blood cell count which is referred to as anaemia. Anaemia is a condition where there are not enough red blood cells to carry the adequate amount of oxygen to your body’s tissues which may result in tiredness and weakness.
Symptoms of anaemia:
- Dizziness or light-headedness
- Irregular heartbeats
- Shortness of breath
- Cold hands or feet
Factors that may cause anaemia:
- Menstruation (monthly periods in women)
- Eliminating certain foods from the diet e.g. red meat
- Malabsorption problems
- Underlying kidney or bone marrow conditions
How is the test carried out?
Our pharmacist will obtain a drop of blood from a finger prick of your finger. This drop of blood is then put into a machine for analysis and the results will be ready for analysis in just a few minutes.