Re: [Histonet] uneven sections on slides

In a message dated 3/17/2005 9:25:56 AM US Mountain Standard Time, writes:

> In the past few days one our pathologists has been complaining about 
> "uneven
> sections."  In other words, he's having to focus up and down a lot because
> the sections aren't flat on the slide.  


It sounds to me like the problem may lie in the microtome.  It could be a 
type of "chatter" in the sections.  They may indeed not be flat on the slide, or 
they could be of uneven thickness.

This is almost always because something is loose on the microtome, such as 
the specimen clamp or something in the knife holder, and the main offender is 
usually the knife holder.

A quick check would be to cut the same block on different microtomes, then 
ask the doc to evaluate the sections.  See if you can pinpoint the problem to a 
specific instrument.  

If you find you have a problem with one microtome, be sure to check out the 
knife holder and the clamping mechanism for the blade.  It could be something 
as simple as paraffin debris in the blade clamping mechanism, or maybe the 
clamping pressure needs to be adjusted or the mechanism's springs need to be 

Just my two cents' worth.  Hope it helps!



Robert (Bob) Chiovetti, Ph.D.
Histonet mailing list

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