Every Blood Drop Varies in Fingerprick Tests: Study
Healthy Living

Every Blood Drop Varies in Fingerprick Tests: Study

Authored by DesiMD Doctor on 24 Nov 2015 - 16:25


According to a new study (published in the American Journal of Clinical Pathology) health care professionals should be careful when using a single drop of fingerprick blood for assessing diseases. The study says, to attain consistent and accurate test results, about six to nine drops of blood should be combined because results varied considerably from drop to drop in fingerprick blood test.

For the study, two bioengineers at Rice University in Houston, TX - Rebecca Richards and Meaghan Bond, examined six droplets of blood (20 microliter droplets) that came from same fingerpirck from each of 11 donors. They erased the first droplet to remove traces of antiseptic and also did not squeeze or "milked" the finger to avoid inaccurate results. The researchers also carried out another test with a different set of donors to ensure whether the minimum droplet size made a difference. They checked the results against blood acquired from donors' veins.

Study Findings: Bond and Richards-Kortum found that hemoglobin content, platelet count and white blood cell count changed significantly from drop to drop this astonished them. They noticed that the hemoglobin concentration reversed by more than two grams per deciliter in a span of two consecutive drops of blood.

"Our results show that people need to take care to administer fingerprick tests in a way that produces accurate results because accuracy in these tests is increasingly important for diagnosing conditions like anemia, infections and sickle-cell anemia, malaria, HIV and other diseases," said Bond.


Reference: Drop-to-Drop Variation in the Cellular Components of Fingerprick Blood Implications for Point-of-Care Diagnostic Development, Meaghan M. Bond and Rebecca R. Richards-Kortum, American Journal of Clinical Pathology, doi:10.1309/AJCP1L7DKMPCHPEH, published December 2015, abstract; RICE University news release, accessed 18 November 2015.

*Disclaimer: This is not medical advice. The content is for educational purposes only. Please contact your doctor for any health care issues.