Effective May 16, 2022, Platelet Aggregation Studies will no longer flag abnormal in Epic for elevated aggregation for ADP, epinephrine, collagen, and arachidonic acid. These elevated result components are not clinically abnormal and may cause unnecessary concern if flagged as abnormal.
Effective February 10, 2022, Spectrum Health Regional Laboratory will offer Varicella Zoster Virus (VZV) PCR testing on swab specimens collected from cutaneous and mucocutaneous lesions (e.g. anorectal, genital, nasal, ocular, oral, skin, urethral).
PCR is the test method of choice for the diagnosis of VZV infection due to its enhanced sensitivity and speed as compared to traditional viral cultures, which should no longer be used for VZV detection.
Beginning Tuesday, January 4, 2022, Spectrum Health Laboratories will include an automated neutrophil (PMN) count on Cell Count with Differential, Body Fluid (LAB210) orders for peritoneal body fluids. This component will be displayed in Epic as an absolute PMN count, body fluid.
• The absolute PMN count in the peritoneal fluid is calculated by multiplying the total nucleated cell count by the percentage of PMNs in the differential.
• This calculation aids in the diagnosis of spontaneous bacterial peritonitis (SBP).
• The diagnosis of bacterial peritonitis is established by a positive peritoneal fluid bacterial culture and an elevated peritoneal fluid absolute PMN count (≥250 cells/uL).
• Epic will automatically calculate the absolute PMN count in peritoneal body fluids based on the manual differential data.
Effective February 24, 2021, Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF) Xanthochromia results of “Present” will be considered a critical laboratory value.
This change was approved by the MEC and driven by a collaboration between neurology and laboratory departments to assist in expediting the diagnosis and management of patients with possible subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH).
The Spectrum Health Regional Laboratory Coagulation Department will be going live with the Helena AggRam analyzer on February 3, 2021. This analyzer uses platelet rich plasma to analyze human platelet aggregation which is measured by absorbance. The following aggregating agents are used in these studies: Arachidonic Acid, ADP, Collagen, Epinephrine, and Ristocetin.
Patients for platelet aggregation studies should be resting, fasting, and non-smoking. Patients should avoid taking any prescription or over the counter medications known to affect platelet function for ten (10) days to two (2) weeks prior to the studies. For a list of medications known to have anti-platelet effects, click here.
Effective March 4th, 2020, Thrombin Time will change from a sendout reference test performed by Mayo Clinic Laboratories to an in-house test performed by Spectrum Health Regional Laboratory. This test will be performed in the Coagulation Laboratory and will include a new reference range (please see link in Test Information below).
Thrombin Time is suitable for monitoring fibrinolysis therapy, screening for disorders of fibrin formation and in cases of suspected fibrinogen deficiency states. It is also useful for the differentiation between a heparin induced prolongation of the thrombin time and fibrin formation disorders.
For questions around this test, please contact the Coagulation Department at 616-267-2740.