Haemolysis in neonatal blood samples: a survey of practice

Ann Clin Biochem 2007;44:178-181
© 2007 Association for Clinical Biochemistry


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Original Articles

S Joshi,
R Vaitkute,
J Jeffery and
R M Ayling

Department of Neonatology, Derriford Hospital, Plymouth PL6 8DH, UK;
Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Derriford Hospital, Plymouth PL6 8DH, UK

Objective: To survey how laboratories report, and neonatologistsperceive them to report, the presence of haemolysis in neonatalblood samples.

Methods: A questionnaire was sent to clinical biochemists andneonatologists in 88 hospitals believed to be using Roche methodology.

Results: A 49% response rate was obtained. Seventeen hospitalswere excluded from analysis owing to incomplete questionnairesor altered methodology. Of the remaining 71 hospitals, 30 (42%)laboratories and 18 (25%) neonatologists responded – where bothresponded, none gave identical replies. Eighteen laboratoriesadmitted the use of serum indices to make decisions on haemolysedsamples. Although recommended interference limits are availablefrom Roche, there was little consensus between laboratories.

Conclusions: Laboratories should have clear guidelines on theprocessing of haemolysed samples from neonates and these shouldbe adequately communicated to those responsible for their directcare.

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