What is hair mineral analysis?
Hair tissue mineral analysis (HTMA) is an analytical test that evaluates hair tissue for nutritional and toxic elements as a reflection of the bodies mineral stores and levels. It is a safe and non-invasive test that provides indicative mineral balances and comparative ratios of nutrients and toxic minerals in the body.
How is the hair sample taken?
The hair should be clean, well rinsed, untreated and uncoloured. Using clean, stainless steel scissors cut small amounts of hair from the back of the head. Cut the hair as close to the scalp as possible. If the hair is less than 4cm in length, keep all of it for testing. If it is longer, cut off and keep the 4cm that was growing closest to the scalp. Place hair in the hair sample envelope provided.
The laboratory requires approximately one tablespoon of hair for testing (0.5gm).
Do I have to use the envelope that InterClinical Laboratories has provided?
It is not essential, however, we do prefer that you use the envelope we provide as it is of a specific weight for the laboratory and also guarantees a clean and untainted environment for the hair sample. Mediums such as plastic or foil are unsuitable and can contaminate the sample, therefore leading to potentially inaccurate results. Additionally, by using our envelope, the sample is not required to be transferred once it reaches us thus minimising the potential for external contamination. If you do choose to use your own envelope, place the hair sample in a plain clean unused paper envelope, making sure to write your name, gender, age, sample location (eg. scalp) and phone number on the envelope before placing the sample inside. Put the hair sample envelope into another envelope with the required request form and post to our facility.
If I can't use head hair, can I use pubic hair?
Yes, should head hair not be available, you can use pubic or axillary hair as an alternative to head hair. As our reference ranges are based on scalp hair, a scalp sample is preferable; however, we can accept pubic hair, head hair or axillary hair. These samples can provide reliable data for toxic minerals, but some of the results for the nutritional minerals may be misrepresented e.g. potassium and sodium due to contamination by soap and cosmetic makeup residue. Please ensure the hair is thoroughly rinsed with clean water and dried before taking the sample to avoid the presence of soap, deodorants and cosmetic products.
It is essential that you don't mix different types of hair e.g. do not mix head hair with pubic hair.
If there is no body hair available, fingernail clippings may be sent. The same amount of sample is required, approximately 0.5gm. Please ensure nails are scrubbed and cleaned before submitting the sample to the laboratory for analysis.
Can I send my hair if it is dyed?
If hair is treated and coloured, wait six to eight weeks and take the sample from the freshly grown (i.e. untreated) hair. Any hair treatment or colour, natural or otherwise, can potentially lead to less accurate results for some elements tested.
How long is the hair sample good for once I have cut it?
As long as the hair is stored in the paper envelope and in a clean dry area, the hair sample will maintain its integrity indefinitely. Please do not store the hair sample in plastic or foil as these are potential contaminants. The longer it is between cutting the sample and the sample being processed by our laboratory, the less relevant the results become to your current status of mineral and toxic element storage.
What are the different reports?
There are 3 profiles to choose from:
All profiles analyse for over 37 nutritional and toxic elements and provide a graph showing these levels as well as over 26 important toxic and nutritional ratios.
Profile 1 - Results Only report - this is a report that shows you just the analysis of the test on a graph.
Profile 2 - Interpretative report - this is our most popular, comprehensive and recommended report which contains the graphical data plus a detailed discussion of your results as well as dietary recommendations.
Profile 3 - Comparative report - this report compares current and previous test results and is most beneficial if you have had a test in the last 12-18 months and require a follow-up analysis.
Note: All reports are delivered by email as PDF files. Extra charges apply for hard copies.
Please contact your health professional for pricing details.
How do I pay for the hair test?
Payment methods include Mastercard and Visa, cheque and money orders. For payment by Mastercard or Visa, please complete the credit card payment authority on the back of the Hair Tissue Analysis Request Form. Cheques or money orders should be made payable to GoldQuest T/A InterClinical Laboratories NZ (bank account details are in the forms).
Can I claim the hair tissue analysis on Medicare or private health funds?
It may be possible to claim from private health funds, please check with your fund for information. Some health funds offer rebates on non-specific health care items when recommended by a healthcare professional.
Can I claim against my business under Health and Safety?
Yes! Many self-employed such as builders, plumbers and farmers have been able to put this testing and the consultations with their health professional through their businesses as part of toxic monitoring as part of their health and safety requirements.
How long will it take to receive my results?
It will take approximately 2-3 weeks to receive your results by email as a PDF. If you have requested printed copies these will be sent to the addresses supplied on the request form. If your practitioner has requested the test, the results will be emailed to the practitioner. The practitioner will receive two copies of the results if hardcopies have been purchased.
At your follow up appointment to discuss the HTMA results, they should give you one copy to take home.
Do you send the results to me?
If you are ordering the hair tissue analysis privately (i.e. without practitioner referral), the results will be sent to the email address that has been filled out on your request form. You will receive the patient copy.
If you require the Doctor's copy to be emailed to your healthcare practitioner, please contact InterClinical Laboratories NZ via this website. If a referring practitioner has requested the hair tissue analysis, then the practitioner copy and your patient copy will be emailed to your practitioner (or posted, if a hard copy was purchased), where they will be available for you to collect when at your next appointment with your practitioner.
Do you test the hair for chemicals or drugs?
We test the hair for over 37 different minerals (i.e. nutritional and toxic minerals), but we do not test the hair for chemicals or drugs.
Do you test the hair for allergies?
We test the hair to show the internal storage of nutritional and toxic minerals; we do not test the hair for allergies. However, due to our understanding of mineral balances, out report may indicate certain mineral patterns that are known to influence particular allergy types.
Do InterClinical Laboratories conduct any other testing?
InterClinical Laboratories solely focus on being the leading provider of hair tissue mineral analysis (HTMA) services in Australia and New Zealand, and for that reason do not provide any other testing.
Can you tell me what supplements I should take?
InterClinical Laboratories is a laboratory service provider, not a clinic. We are unable to legally give individual health advice or treatment recommendations to the general public. It is advisable to take the results to your healthcare practitioner for them to advise you of supplements and other therapies that might be appropriate to your individual health situation.