Introduction: A specific sequence is recommended for filling blood tubes during blood collection to prevent erroneous test results due to carryover of additives. However, requirement of this procedure is still debatable. This study was aimed to investigate the potassium ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (K-EDTA) contamination in blood samples taken after a tube containing the additive during routine workflow. The study was also carried out to examine the effect of order of draw on potassium results, regardless of K-EDTA contamination.
Materials and methods: In 388 outpatients, to determine the probability of K-EDTA cross-contamination, blood was drawn sequentially into a serum tube, followed by a tube containing K-EDTA, and by another serum tube. In another 405 outpatients, to evaluate the effect of order of draw blood unrelated to K-EDTA contamination, two serum tube were successively collected. Potassium was measured on Cobas 6000 c501 analyser (Roche Diagnostic GmbH, Mannheim, Germany) by indirect ion selective electrode method.
Results: Of paired samples collected before and after a K-EDTA tube, 24% had a potassium difference of above 0.3 mmol/L. However, no EDTA contamination was detected in these samples as well as 95% confidence intervals (CI) of limits of agreement for calcium were within the allowable error limits based on reference change values. Interestingly, of blood samples drawn successively, 24% had also a difference greater than 0.3 mmol/L for potassium.
Conclusion: Incorrect order of draw using closed blood collection system does not cause K-EDTA contamination, even in routine workflow. However, regardless of K-EDTA contamination, order of draw has significant influence on the potassium results.Reference:
Ercan Ş, Ramadan B, Gerenli O. Order of draw of blood samples affect potassium results without K-EDTA contamination during routine workflow. Biochem Med (Zagreb). 2021 Jun 15;31(2):020704. doi: 10.11613/BM.2021.020704. Epub 2021 Apr 15. PMID: 33927554; PMCID: PMC8047790.