RE: [Histonet] histology ink washing off

From:"Mickie Johnson"

India ink is commonly used to mark margins on breast and skin biopsies. Dry
the surface with a paper towel, then dab on India ink with a cotton swab and
then dip the specimen (with or without blotting off the excess ink) in
either 5% acetic acid (aqueous) or Bouin's fluid before cutting sections to
submit in cassettes. The acid 'fixes' the dye to the surface so it will not
run into the deeper recesses of the specimen. This method can also be used
to fix colored inks to the margin when medial/lateral and superior/inferior
orientation is important.

Mickie Johnson, B.S., HTL(ASCP)
Mohs Histology Consulting Services, LLC
  & Mohs Lab Staffing
2507 S. Manito Blvd.
Spokane, WA 99203
FAX   509-624-3926
Web: & 
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-----Original Message-----
[] On Behalf Of Susan Bachus
Sent: Sunday, October 12, 2008 12:26 AM
Subject: Re: [Histonet] histology ink washing off

Back in the old days we used to use "india ink" to label slides--so I don't 
know whether it would also work on tissue (as opposed to glass), but it 
might be worth a try.   Susan
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Gudrun Lang" 
To: "'Leslie Chen'" 
Sent: Saturday, October 11, 2008 5:15 AM
Subject: AW: [Histonet] histology ink washing off

We dry and heat the tissue surface with a hair-dryer at the grossing. It
sounds a little bit rigid, but it works and the tissue margins are easily
seen in the slide. The excess dye also will be solved in the NBF, but there
sticks enough on the tissuemargins.

Gudrun Lang

Biomed. Analytikerin
Akh Linz
Krankenhausstr. 9
4020 Linz
-----Ursprüngliche Nachricht-----
[] Im Auftrag von Leslie
Gesendet: Freitag, 10. Oktober 2008 22:31
Betreff: [Histonet] histology ink washing off

I am having a problem with histology tissue marking ink washing off
specimens in water, PFA, or 70% alcohol.  This is before the tissue even
gets processed for paraffin embedding. Does anyone have any suggestions on
how to keep the ink from coming off?  Thank you.


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