Phlebotomy Training

“46-68% of all laboratory errors occur in the preanalytical phase, and 12.5% of
preanalytical laboratory errors may cause an erroneous medical decision.”

Tourniquet Time

The tourniquet must be loosened after no more than one minute If applied for longer the pressure from the tourniquet may cause elevated potassium levels The tourniquet should be positioned 7 5 cm to 10 cm above the puncture site


Most tubes contain an additive Regardless of the additive type, all tubes should be gently inverted to ensure thorough mixing of the blood with the additive Tubes with anticoagulants such as EDTA, heparin etc must be mixed to ensure that the specimen does not clot For example, insufficient mixing could lead to platelet clumping in EDTA tubes Tubes with a clot activator must also be mixed or the specimen may not clot completely in the recommended time

Storage of Tubes

Store all tubes at 8 30 o C, unless otherwise noted on the package label Extreme temperatures can reduce the effectiveness of the tubes and cause abstract results Always remember to rotate your stock


Coagulation tubes should be taken before clot activator tubes as the clot activator in clot activator tubes may affect coagulation test results

Phlebotomy Training: Vacuum Tubes

Phlebotomy Training: Non-Vacuum Tubes