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Specimen Collection & Handling

It is essential that all specimen be properly collected to ensure that all test results are accurate. Chemistry, Hematology, and Serology specimens should be kept cool until we receive them. As you will note in the following sections, each test requirement is listed at the minimum required level. If you are unable to collect a sufficient sample, please send it to us and we will do our best to fulfill your request. The following is a brief summarization of the types of test collection media we offer.

Red Top Tube (plain) for Serum (SP)

Draw blood in a red top vacuum tube. Allow the tube to fill completely. Invert that tube once to accelerate the clotting. Allow the blood to clot for 20 minutes. Centrifuge for 5 - 10 minutes at 2000 - 2800 rpm. Transfer the serum into a plastic vial. Hemolyzed, icteric or lipemic specimens will invalidate certain tests. Upon receipt of such specimens, we may request a new sample to assure results of diagnostic value.

Serum Separator Tube with Barrier Gel (S)

This tube has a special gel which separates the serum from the clotted blood. It can be used in place of the regular Red Top Plain Tube.

  • Fill the tube completely via the internal vacuum and invert gently several times to accelerate clotting.
  • Allow to stand with the red rubber stopper in place for 20 minutes to clot. Do not remove the stopper.
  • Centrifuge for 5 - 10 minutes at 2000 - 2800 rpm.
  • After completion of the above steps, submit sample to our laboratory.
  • For drug levels, progesterone, and T4, transfer the Serum into a Plain Tube immediately after Centrifuge.

Lavender Top Tube (L)

This tube contains the anticoagulant EDTA, which is suitable for most hematological procedures. After filling the tube with blood via the internal vacuum, it should be inverted gently several times to prevent clotting .

Light Blue Top Tube (B)

This tube contains a citrate solution which is designed to preserve the sample for coagulation testing. The tube must be filled at least 2/3 full via the internal vacuum and inverted gently at least five (5) times to prevent clotting.

Green Top Tube (G)

This tube contains the anticoagulant heparin, which is required for certain analyses. Fill the tube completely via the internal vacuum and gently invert at least five (5) times to prevent clotting.

Gray Top Tube (GY)

This tube contains an oxalate/fluride mixture and is used for plasma glucose determinations. Fill the tube with blood via the internal vacuum and gently invert at least five (5) times to prevent clotting.

Plasma (P)

Draw blood in specified (blue, green, lavender) top vacuum tube. After the tube has been filled with blood, it should be inverted at least 5 - 6 times in order to facilitate mixing and prevent coagulation. Centrifuge 5 - 10 minutes at 2000 - 2800 rpm. Transfer the plasma into a plastic transport vial. Clearly label as "Plasma Purple Top", "Plasma Blue Top", or "Plasma Green Top."

Histology Mailer Container (Biopsy Jar)

For your convenience, we offer pre-filled histo mailers in three sizes to best accommodate your specimen submissions. The sizes are: small, medium, and large.

Microbiology Culturette Swab

For routine Aerobic, Anaerobic, Campylobacter and Fungal cultures specimen can be collected in the culturette that we supply (Note the expiration date before submitting specimen). Please remember to mark the requisition form which type of culture you are requesting.

Microbiology Blood Culture Bottles

For best results submit blood cultures in the media that we supply.

Chlamydia Swab

For those clients requesting our Chlamydia Antigen Detection by Elisa, we offer special swabs designed specifically for this test.

Avian Hematology and Chemistry

Small microtainer tubes are available exclusively for avian samples. Those include: red, lavender and green top lithium tubes.


Blood smears should be labeled with owner's and animal's full name and date using a pencil. Do not use ball point ink or labels/stickers to identify slides. Allow slides to dry on a flat surface. Store at room temperature in a plastic or cardboard holder. Do not refrigerate slides.

Holding Samples

Most samples are held for 10 days after receipt and initial testing. Do NOT submit samples for "Hold Only". These samples should be kept at your facility until testing is deemed necessary.


Specimens should be labeled with uniquely numbered label or name from each corresponding requisition. Specimen may be rejected due to improper labeling. If plasma and serum are required on a patient, designate specimen type on tube.


Each specimen must be stored and transported at refrigerated temperature unless indicated otherwise. Indicate special temperature requirements to the courier. Separate aliquots should be submitted for each test requiring a frozen specimen.


Specimens should be in leak-proof vials or bottles, capped tightly, placed in a biohazard bag with the requisition placed in the outside pouch separated from the specimen. Leak-proof transport containers and biohazard bags are available from National Biovet Laboratory by submitting a supply request or by calling Customer Service at:

305-273-5788 or 1-800-910-2888

Additional packaging for commercial couriers or the U.S. mail: An absorbent pad or desiccators packet must be placed in the biohazard bag with sample.

CAUTION: Do NOT place the absorbent inside the specimen container. This then should be placed in a sturdy styrofoam box or rigid cardboard box and packaging material added so items will not shift and break. The package must have proper mailing label or bill of lading attached identifying the sender and recipient:

National Biovet Laboratory
10830 SW 104 St
Miami, FL 33176

Most commercial couriers also require the box to be placed in a waterproof labpack.

THIS ---->https://nationalbiovetcom.vetmatrixbase.com/general-information/specimen-collection---handling.html

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