Re: Use of quick freeze spray during frozen sectioning

From:Lee & Peggy Wenk

Does it help if they knew that using a cryogenic spray in a cryostat is
not allowed by OSHA or by CAP?

"All procedures involving blood or other potential infectious materials
shall be performed in such as manner as to minimize splashing, spraying,
spattering, or generation of droplets of these substances."

NCCLS DOCUMENT M29-T (Vol. 9, No. 1)
- Protection of Laboratory Workers
"Frozen sections done on unfixed tissue pose a high risk because accidents
are common.  Freezing of tissue does not inactivate infectious agents.
Freezing propellants under pressure should not be used for frozen sections
as they may cause spattering of droplets of infectious material."

The reason pathologists/residents like to use it is because they are in a
hurry, and it
takes 5 minutes to freeze tissue on the cryobar in the cryostat, if there is
no "heat
extractor" arm that can help to freeze it from the top down.

So if you have a piece of equipment that allows for fast freezing, so they
can be
sectioning sooner, they'll stop using the cryospray.

We use the Histobath from Shandon-Lipshaw (who I believe is no Thermo
It electrically cools the isopentane to about -50 degrees C. Tissue in OCT
frozen in about 15-25 seconds, depending upon the size of the tissue and the
of OCT. They can start cutting immediately. And because it is slightly
colder than
the cryostat, they can cut thinner sections and fattier tissue.

I'm sure other companies make similar machines. Our pathologists like it
alot, and
the cryogenic spray has disappeared from the frozen section rooms (well,
most of
the time. Once in a while . . . ).

Peggy A. Wenk, HTL(ASCP)SLS
William Beaumont Hospital
Royal Oak, MI 48073

----- Original Message -----
From: "Janice Alvarez" 
Sent: Wednesday, January 30, 2002 1:04 PM
Subject: Use of quick freeze spray during frozen sectioning

> We are trying to eliminate the use of this product during FS and of
> course I'm getting a lot of opposition from the residents.
> What are other labs doing?
> Thanks

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