First visit

Examinations/Tests and Treatments

Blood collection

Blood collectionThe central blood collection room (2F) is open from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. to collect blood from outpatients aged seven years or older for whom it is indicated.
For urine tests too, patients should report at the reception counter of the central blood collection room for collection of urine.

*Returning patients are kindly requested to check in at one of the return-visit reception machines in the outpatient hall on the first floor before proceeding to the blood collection room.

Please note

Blood is usually collected from your arm. Try to wear clothes that easily provide access to above the elbow.


This is a test to record the electrical activity of the heart at the surface of the body.
It takes approximately five minutes.
The test is conducted to check for the possibility of arrhythmias, myocardial infarction or other problems.
Electrodes are placed on the arms, legs and chest during the test.

Please note

Try to wear clothes that easily provide access to your ankles and chest.


With these tests, “arterial stiffness” and “clogging of lower extremity arteries” are examined.
It takes approximately 15 to 30 minutes.
The extent of arteriosclerosis and stenosis/occlusion of lower extremity arteries is evaluated.
The patient lies in a supine position, and the blood pressure in the upper arms and ankles is measured simultaneously.

Please note

Try to wear clothes that easily provide access to your arms from the shoulders to the elbows, and your legs from the knees to the heels.

Respiratory function test

This is a test that examines the function of the lungs by measuring the breathing capacity and blowing strength. The required time, which depends on the test type, is approximately 10 to 60 minutes.
This test is conducted to diagnose asthma, COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) and other respiratory diseases, determine their severity and evaluate your condition before and after surgery.
The patient’s effort and cooperation are essential to obtain accurate test data.

Urea breath test

This is a test to check whether a patient is infected with Helicobacter pylori, which is considered to cause gastritis and gastric ulcer. The test takes approximately 30 minutes.
Breath is collected before and after the test drug is taken. This is an easy test.

Please note

This test is performed under fasting conditions. Please skip breakfast if the test starts early in the morning.

Electroencephalography and magnetoencephalography

These are tests to record electricity and magnetic fields generated by active brain cells.
Electroencephalography takes 40 to 60 minutes and magnetoencephalography approximately 120 minutes.
These are important tests for a diagnosis of epilepsy, brain tumors and cerebrovascular disorders etc.

Please note

Try to wash your head before coming for the tests.
Patients who have to undergo tests while asleep are kindly requested to limit your sleeping hours on the day before the tests so that you can easily fall asleep.
Tests are only conducted on appointment.

Nerve conduction and evoked potential tests

These tests examine the excitation conduction rate and response of a nerve by stimulating the nerve electrically.
A test takes 20 to 60 minutes depending on the type of test.
These tests are effective to diagnose sensory, motility and other disturbances.
Electrical stimulation involves slight pain.

Please note

Try to wear clothes that easily provide access to your arms to above the elbows and your legs to above the knees.


X-rays are taken to examine the bones of the chest, abdomen and limbs.
It takes approximately five to 10 minutes.
At Hokkaido University, X-rays are viewed on a computer screen instead of the conventional films.

Please note

Please check in at Radiology. You will be guided to the X-ray room.
You may be asked to remove clothes that cover the area to be examined before x-rays are taken. Try to wear clothes that can easily be removed.

Special radiographic examination, X-ray fluoroscopy and angiography

These are special X-rays that create images of soft tissues including breast tissues, and provide an effective test method to detect breast cancer.
There is also a test using an x-ray fluoroscopic apparatus.
This test is conducted to examine the stomach.
A contrast medium may be used.
A tube is inserted into a blood vessel, and a contrast medium is injected into the tube to examine the condition of organs.
Anticancer agents and other drugs may be injected.

Please note

  • No special preparation is necessary for mammography. Female engineers perform mammography tests at out hospital. If you feel uncomfortable, please discuss it with them.
  • A contrast medium may be used for X-ray fluoroscopy. Please let us know in advance if you have any allergies.
  • Most patients are hospitalized before angiography. You will receive a detailed explanation at the time of admission.


This is a test that takes cross-sectional images of the body using X-rays.
It takes five to 10 minutes.

Please note

Please check in at the reception of the CT room.
The test is by appointment only. A contrast medium may be used. Please let us know in advance if you have any allergies.


This is a test that examines structures inside the body using strong magnetic fields and radio waves.
Cross-sectional images of the body from various angles can be created.

Please note

Patients with any metal, such as a cardiac pacemaker, intracephalic aneurysm clip or artificial joint, inside the body, cannot undergo an MRI scan.

Nuclear medicine scan

This is a test that creates images of the distribution of drugs that release radiation (radiopharmaceuticals) inside the body after administration of the drugs via the oral route or intravenous injection.
Images showing various organ functions can be taken.

Please note

Tests are only conducted on appointment. It takes approximately one week from making an appointment until the test.
Since radiation is used, pregnant and breast-feeding women may not undergo the test. Please inform us if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.


This is a type of nuclear scan that involves a different type of radioactive drug.
An image indicating the location of tumors in the body can be taken.
A radioactive drug called FDG is mainly used for the test.

Please note

Tests are only conducted on appointment. It takes a few days to a week from making an appointment until the test.
For a test using FDG it is necessary to fast for several hours before the test, control your sugar and abstain from heavy exercise. You will be informed of the details before the test.


At Hokkaido University Hospital, evaluation, treatment and training are conducted for motor dysfunction, higher brain dysfunction, speech disorders, dysphagia, mental dysfunction and other disorders through physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech-hearing therapy and other therapies.
Patients who wish to undergo rehabilitation training must contact the Department of Rehabilitation and Physical Medicine (Department of Psychiatry and Neurology for mental dysfunction) for a consultation.


1. What is autotransfusion?

If a specific amount of bleeding is expected during surgery, the patient’s own blood is collected in advance (referred to as autologous blood donation) and this blood is then transfused to the patient as necessary during surgery. This is called autotransfusion.

2. Patients who should consider autotransfusion

If a relatively large amount of bleeding (usually 400 – 500 ml or more) is expected during scheduled surgery, autotransfusion is considered for the patient. However, autologous blood donation may not be possible due to the side effects mentioned below. Autotransfusion cannot be performed for small children and elderly people, or in those with complications or anemia (or near anemia). Whether it will be possible or not depends on an individual. If you would like to try autotransfusion, please consult your doctor.

3. Autologous blood donation procedure

If it is decided that autotransfusion is necessary, the patient’s doctor will submit a request to the blood transfusion division. An autologous blood donation plan (blood is collected on Mondays and Thursdays) is made at the blood transfusion division, and the patient is informed of the plan through the doctor. The patient then visits the blood collection room of the blood transfusion division on the scheduled days, and the patient’s blood is collected by the attending doctor of the blood transfusion division. A special blood transfusion bag is used to collect 200 to 400 ml blood at a time depending on the patient’s condition and laboratory data. The collected blood is labeled with the patient’s signature to prevent it from being mixed up with another patient’s blood and is stored in the refrigerator of the blood transfusion division (storage life: five weeks).

4. Advantages and disadvantages of autotransfusion

One of the advantages of autotransfusion is that some side effects of blood by donation (referred to as homologous blood) can be avoided. The most important possible side effects that can be avoided are viral infections like hepatitis and AIDS. Since the accuracy of blood supply tests has improved, the probability of infection with these viruses through blood has become lower. However, it is impossible to reduce the probability to zero with the present situation of medical science. On the contrary, since the patient’s own blood is used in autotransfusion, there are no worries about infection with viruses.

However, autotransfusion also has disadvantages. The greatest disadvantage is the occurrence of side effects at the time of blood collection. Blood is carefully collected while checking the patient’s condition. Even so, side effects occur. The most frequently observed side effect is a vasovagal reflex, which is the patient’s body’s spontaneous reaction during blood collection. This causes dizziness, cold sweat and a slight pressure drop as minor symptoms. If the symptoms progress, it will cause nausea, vomiting and a moderately severe drop in blood pressure. In rare cases, it may produce serious symptoms such as unconsciousness and cardiac arrest. Therefore, autotransfusion is not always beneficial. It is necessary to decide whether to perform autotransfusion after comparing it with the side effects of allogeneic transfusion.

If you would like to know more about autotransfusion, please ask your primary doctor or attending doctor at the blood transfusion division.