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July 2024 QQ: Specimen Storage

Coag specimen mismanagement is the source of most errors in hemostasis testing. As mentioned in our June 28, 2024 entry, Adjusting AC Volume in Polycythemia, CLSI released its latest edition of H21: Collection, Transport, and Processing of Blood Specimens for Testing Plasma-Based Coagulation Assays, 6th ed. Guideline H21, Clinical Laboratory and Standards Institute, 2024. The guideline offers specific storage period limits for routine and special coagulation testing. Our July 2024 question, concerning H21, asks “How long may you store a specimen after collection for a PT test?” Your answer will help us discuss proper specimen management. As always, add your comment below.

Comments (1)
Specimen Management
Jul 2, 2024 8:01pm

The Quick Question could raise a separate intention, namely how long do labs store samples once PTs (or normal coag tests) are performed. In Australia, we follow NPAAC guidelines which mandate these be stored a minimum of 1 week before discarding – this is mostly to ensure the ability to check sample identity should there be any question about the results, with add on testing being limited to just 24 hours in most cases.

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