Low volume tubes are not effective to reduce the rate of hemolyzed specimens from the emergency department.
Clin Biochem. 2014 Feb;47(3):227-9
Authors: Lippi G, Bonelli P, Graiani V, Caleffi C, Cervellin G
OBJECTIVES: Spurious hemolysis is the leading source of nonconformities that can be recorded in diagnostic samples, especially those collected in the emergency department (ED). The aim of this study was to assess whether the shift from regular to low volume blood collection tubes may reduce the rate of hemolysis in a large urban ED, where approximately 80% of blood collections are performed through catheters.
DESIGN AND METHODS: In a former 5-month period, blood collection in the ED was performed using 5.0mL (13×100mm) plastic serum tubes, which were then completely replaced with 3.5mL (13×75mm) plastic serum tubes for another period of 5months. The rate of hemolyzed specimens (i.e., those containing a cell-free hemoglobin ≥0.5gL) collected in the two periods was compared by Fisher exact test.
RESULTS: The rate of hemolyzed specimens received from the ED increased from 3.5% using 5.0mL plastic serum tubes to 5.2% after introduction of 3.5mL plastic serum tubes (p<0.001).
CONCLUSIONS: The use of low volume tubes was not effective to decrease the hemolysis rate in a large urban ED.
PMID: 24360888 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]