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Chemistry

Reference Range Update: ALT and AST

After consultation with our clinical partners, Spectrum Health West Michigan Laboratory will be adjusting the pediatric reference ranges for our new ALT and AST reagents in an effort to better serve our population.  Numerous academic studies were reviewed, and the values listed below were adopted on August 3, 2022: Continue Reading

Chemistry

Updates: Chemistry Reference Ranges

Effective August 2, 2022, reference ranges for the below tests will be updated to better align with the vendor’s recommendation and with Spectrum Health Lakeland Laboratory. Please click on the links below and scroll to the Reference Range field to see the updated ranges.

Lithium Level [LAB29]

PTH Intact [LAB108]

IgM Level [LAB72]

IgA Level [LAB73]

CA 125 Level [LAB155]

C4 Complement Level [LAB151]

C3 Complement Level [LAB152]

Albumin Level [LAB45]

Transferrin Level [LAB133]

Questions or inquiries may be directed to the “Contact Us” link above.

Microbiology, Test Utilization

Enteric Pathogens PCR Panel: New Order Criteria

The Enteric Pathogens PCR test performed by Spectrum Health Laboratory may be used to detect common pathogenic bacteria and viruses in stool collected from individuals with symptoms of gastrointestinal infection. Specifically, this test detects Campylobacter, Salmonella, Shigella, Vibrio, Yersinia enterocolitica, Norovirus, Rotavirus, and the Shiga toxin virulence factor. Effective August 17, 2022, Spectrum Health’s Epic EMR will contain new ask-at-order questions to help improve the clinical decision support and appropriate utilization of this testing. Continue Reading

General Information, Toxicology

Updates to Blood Lead Reporting

As of July 19, 2022, in alignment with recommendations from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) the reference range for blood lead testing has been updated from 5 mcg/dL to 3.5 mcg/dL.

This applies to both: Lead, Blood Level [LAB98] and Lead Screen Filter Paper [LAB2111119].

In addition, at this time the low end of reporting for Lead Screen Filter Paper [LAB2111119] has increased from 1 mcg/dL to 2 mcg/dL. Continue Reading

General Information, Microbiology, Test Utilization

Discontinuation of Placenta Microbiology Cultures

As of April 12, 2022, Spectrum Health Laboratory will no longer add microbiology cultures to placental tissues received based on paper requisition forms.

Viral and bacterial cultures from placental tissue are rarely clinically beneficial and are no longer the gold standard diagnostic approach due to the relative insensitivity of culture methods.

If viral studies are desired (possible indications could include known CMV exposure with positive IgM or intrauterine fetal demise at < 28 weeks), then molecular testing is the recommended diagnostic approach. HSV and CMV PCR tests may be ordered in Epic.

Herpes Simplex 1/2 Qualitative PCR, Tissue (LAB1230413)

Cytomegalovirus (CMV) Qualitative PCR, Tissue (LAB1230291)

Bacterial cultures are challenging to interpret since they typically grow normal genital flora and histopathological analysis used to diagnose acute chorioamnionitis correlates poorly with growth from bacterial placenta cultures. If indicated, culture and PCR tests may be ordered in Epic.

Tissue Culture (LAB2111173)

Metamycoplasma hominis, Molecular Detection, PCR, Varies (LAB848)

Ureaplasma species, Molecular Detection, PCR, Varies (LAB848)

Placenta tissues sent to the lab in formalin are not acceptable for PCR or culture orders.