Re: Cytology specimens

From:Amos Brooks <>

    Not to question Cytology 101, but I have dealt with a few stubborn
specimens that the cytopathologist asked the full sample to be sent. We
processed the first few tubes that they sent, and she found nothing she was
looking for. When we went back to the huge glass bottle BAM! there they
    I certainly am not advocating the submission of all fluid from all
procedures. Geez, can you imagine the storage issues. I just wanted to relay
an interesting somewhat relevant situation. And yes, at the time I was
grumbling very loudly about doing it.
    Obviously, in retrospect,  the large specimen was not adequately shaken
prior to drawing the submitted tubes. I would not be surprised if this was
not uncommon though. Cells in suspension separate quickly, so the test
material was probably supernatant.
Amos Brooks
----- Original Message -----
To: <>
Sent: Friday, May 25, 2001 11:10 AM
Subject: Cytology specimens

> Hi,
> Can anyone give me some help with cytology specimens?  We have a
> that says we do not accept large glass containers of body fluids in
> Cytology. Is that procedure from a specific source, CAP etc. We ask that
> specimens should be submitted in an equal amount of fixative. We usually
> advise the doctors who call to shake up the pint/quart container and just
> pour a sample, 50 cc's in a container of 50 cc's of Saccomanno fixative.
> Some of these physicians complain that we are not testing enough of the
> fluid and might be missing something. I guess they never took Cytology 101
> if they really think we are testing every ounce of that size specimen. Do
> they think we cut slides on every inch of a surgical specimen? Anyhow, is
> there anything in writing from CAP or NYS that I might be missing that
> help me when I get these calls? Or do any of you handle this differently?
> have assumed procedures left here by a Cytotechnologist before me.
> Thanks,
> Theresa Rohr, BA HT(ASCP)
> Nyack Hospital
> New York
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