Saliva Test or Blood Spot - What's Best?

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Whether to use a saliva test or a blood spot test is primarily a matter of personal preference. Both are easy and accurate. Both can be taken at home, and the results mailed to the lab.

With the saliva test, you spit into a tube first thing in the morning (or more often with some of the tests). Since you have to collect about a tablespoon of saliva, if you tend to not have a lot of saliva, the blood spot test might be easier.

The blood spot test involves a nearly painless finger stick to provide a few drops of blood on a small piece of blotting paper. If you're queasy about the sight of blood, the saliva test might be easier.

Both tests are placed in a prepaid mailer to be sent to the lab for analysis and results.

Blood Spot vs. Serum Blood Tests
The blood spot test is not the same as the serum blood tests that your doctor sends you to a lab for. The blood spot test measures capillary blood, which gives an accurate measure of bioavailable hormones, while the serum blood test measures the hormones found in the serum, or watery part of the blood, which does not give an accurate measure of bioavailable hormones. See the "Related Articles" links below for more information about Capillary Blood Spot testing and Serum Blood Testing.

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