This section contains information about commonly used laboratory tests. It includes most of the blood, urine, and cerebrospinal fluid tests found in this book, with the exception of therapeutic drug monitoring and pharmacogenetic tests (see Chapter 4). Entries are arranged alphabetically.
This first column lists the common test name, the specimen analyzed, and any test name abbreviation (in parentheses).
Below this is the reference range (also called reference interval) for each test. The first entry is in conventional units, and the second entry (in [brackets]) is in SI units (Système International d’Unités). Any panic values for a particular test are placed here after the word Panic. The reference ranges provided are from several large medical centers; consult your own clinical laboratory for those used in your institution.
This column also shows which tube to use for collecting blood and other body fluids, how much the test costs (using symbols; see below), and how to collect the specimen.
The scale used for the cost of each test is:
Listed below are the common specimen collection tubes and their contents:
|Tube Top Color ||Tube Contents ||Typical Use |
|Lavender or Pink ||K2EDTA ||Complete blood count; blood banking (plasma); molecular testing (cell-based); flow cytometry (immunophenotyping) |
|Gold SST ||Clot activator and gel for serum separation ||Serum chemistry tests |
|White PPT ||K2EDTA and gel for plasma separation ||Molecular testing (plasma-based) |
|Red ||None ||Blood banking (serum); therapeutic drug monitoring |
|Blue ||Sodium citrate ||Coagulation studies |
|Green PPT, Light green PPT ||Sodium heparin or lithium heparin (green PPT, without gel; light green PPT, with gel for plasma separation) ||Plasma chemistry tests (light green PPT); chromosome analysis (sodium heparin) (green PPT) |
|Yellow ||Acid citrate dextrose (ACD); sodium polyanethol sulfonate (SPS) ||ACD: HLA typing; blood banking (plasma); flow cytometry (immunophenotyping) SPS: Blood culture (microbiology) |
|Dark blue ||Clot activator (free of trace metal) ||Trace metals (eg, lead, mercury, arsenic) |
|Orange RST ||Thrombin and gel for serum separation ||Serum chemistry tests |
|Navy ||Trace metal-free ||Trace metals (eg, lead, mercury, arsenic) |
|Gray ||Inhibitor of glycolysis (sodium fluoride) ||Lactic acid; glucose |
|Black ||Sodium citrate; None (plain black screw top) ||Erythrocyte sedimentation rate (sodium citrate); sterile body fluids for microbiology (plain black screw top) |
This column contains physiologic information about the substance being tested. Information on classification and biologic importance, as well as interactions with other biologic substances and processes, is included.