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Why do I have to wait for days to receive my lab test results?

Lab test results can be available that same day, several days later or take a couple of weeks, depending upon what types of labs are requested by your provider. Some tests require special techniques to obtain the results. It is important to ask your provider how long your lab test may take so you can follow up to review them in a timely manner.
When you have lab tests and imaging, they’re usually done and are in your electronic record in hours, but consumers have to wait days or weeks to receive them. The way most are set up is that the results have to go through the doctor and the doctor has to release them. Some have automatic releases: if the doctor hasn’t released them after seven days, the system releases them. 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.