Pericardial Effusion for Cytology

Test Name:   Pericardial Effusion for Cytology
Alternate Name (s):    
Laboratory Module:   Cytology
Ordering Mnemonic:    
Specimen Type:   

Pericardial Fluid

Collection Container:   Collect in a sterile container or vacutainer bottle
Container Information
Sterile Container
Collection Information:  


I.1.All specimens must be accompanied by a completed manual or Meditech generated cyto-pathology non-gynecological requisition. All mandatory fields must be satisfied in order to complete the request. In the case of computer downtime use the standard cytopathology non-gynecological requisition.

The following information is required on the requisition
(a) Patient identifiers (addressographs may be used)

      (i) patient's first and last name
      (ii) hospital unique number
      (iii) date of birth
      (iv) Ontario Health Insurance Number with version code.
(b) Submitting area identifiers: Hospital site (BGH or The Willett) and the submitting department (Emergency, Ambulatory Care etc.).
(c) Submitting physician's name.
(d) Date of specimen collection
(e) Pre- and post-operative presumptive diagnosis.
(f) A brief clinical history, relevant pathological and radiological findings.
(g) Specimen information
     (i) specimen type/source
     (ii) specimen site
I.2. If received, the specimen container must be labeled. Addressograph labels are preferred, otherwise the following information must be provided, clearly written in ink:
(a) Patient identifiers -
     (i) patient's full name
     (ii) hospital unique number
     (iii) and at least one other unique additional identifier (ie. date of birth, OHIN).
(b) Date of specimen collection.
(c) Specimen type and site, as it is written on the Cytology Requisition form.
This information must be recorded on the side of the specimen container and not the lid.
If a specimen is known or suspected to contain unique or extreme biohazard (e.g. CJD) the container shall be so marked.

I.3.Place labeled slides with the patients name and specimen type, in a cardboard slide holder and drying and attach an addressograph label on the outside of the holder.

I.4. Place specimen containers in a biohazard bag (if applicable). The requisition should be placed in the outer pouch of the biohazard bag.

I.5. Transport specimen to the Triage area of the laboratory as soon as possible

I.6. Inform the triage staff that you have delivered a specimen.


Test Schedule:  

Monday to Friday prior to 1:00 pm

Turnaround Time:   Routine

1 week

Stat / Urgent

2 days

Reference Interval:  


Critical Values:    
Lab Process Notes :   The maximum volume required for cytology testing is 1 liter. Refrigerate (4'C) up to 48 hours unfixed. If there is a delay in processing remove 30-40mls of fluid from the larger vacutainer bottle and fix with an equal volume of cytology fixative. Refrigerate the whole specimen. Be sure to have indicated it is a cytology specimen by placing a pink cytology label on the bottle and if fixation is required be sure to label the container with the appropriate cytology fixative label.

The specimen description should be recorded including, colour, quantity and any other feature worth noting.

Specimens received with a volume of<10mls should have cytology fixative added

Storage & Transport:   Specimens should be stored in the refrigerator
Test Referred to :    BGH, On site
Designed By  Blueprint Agencies