Evaluation of the effect of temperature and time of incubation on complete blood count (CBC) tests
The complete blood count (CBC) is one of the most common tests requested by physicians. The results of this test are affected by different factors such as temperature and time of incubation. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate changes in CBC results at room temperature (RT). In a cross-sectional study, 32 K2EDTA (dipotassium ethylenediamine-tetraacetate)-anticoagulated blood specimens were processed for CBC testing after blood-taking and incubation for 24 h at RT. Specimens were selected from routine laboratory workload. Among the CBC parameters, there were no significant differences in WBC, Plt and Hb results before and after incubation at RT (p>0.05). However, there were significant differences in RBC, Hct, MCV, MCH and MCHC results before and after incubation (p<0.001). The findings of this study showed that some CBC parameters can change after incubation at RT. Testing should therefore be done on blood samples as soon as possible.
Key words: Complete blood count, white blood cell, red blood cell, platelet counts, hemoglobin, hematocrit, mean corpuscular volume, mean corpuscular hemoglobin, mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration, incubation.