Re: warm water block soak

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Date:Mon, 31 Jan 2000 22:47:20 -0500
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I used the combination of both warm water and ice for brittle and/or bloody
tissue.  I would place a faced-off block into the flotation bath for about 30
seconds and then place the block on watery ice.  The softening and rehydration
by warm water and the cooling and continuing rehydration by the watery ice made
sectioning a lot easier and the cell entities sharp.  The hard to cut blocks
only needed a short time on the ice maybe 3 minutes to chill for easier

Routinely, all blocks were rough-cut and placed on watery ice before
It may seem like it would be timely, but it wasn't in the long run.  Sectioning
was a breeze and cellular detail
was excellent.   In most cases, you can just go right down the row of blocks
with little problem.

I don't think I could section blocks without rough cutting them first before
placing them on ice for a good soak.  It would take me too long to section

Rande Kline, HT (ASCP)
Technical Services
EM Science on 10/27/99 08:16:07 PM

cc:    (bcc: Rande Kline/EMI/Merck)
Subject:  warm water block soak

Hi everyone,
    I'm an old war-horse HT working in a small community hospital doing
routine histology. I'm just curious if anyone else has used a warm water soak
for their paraffin blocks (after facing) to improve sectioning. I have found
this technique very helpful in the sectioning of brittle biopsies and bloody
specimens. The crushed ice and water soak prior to sectioning allows a few
good sections after soak, but the warm water soak lets us get several ribbons
 before we encounter dried out tissue. This has cut down on chatter, time
spent re-soaking and over-all quality of sections.
Any feedback?

Maureen Tomblin HT(ASCP)
Union Hospital
Elkton, MD

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