[Histonet] Re: Masson trichrome stain

Robert Richmond RSRICHMOND <@t> aol.com
Tue Dec 30 13:17:33 CST 2008

Sarah Reeves (in the UK) asks:

>>Does anyone know how to achieve a perfect Masson trichrome stain? Our counterstain (light green in acetic acid) works well, but the intensity of the muscle stain is not very bright. Does anyone have any suggestions? We will be staining liver biopsies mostly in the near future and wish to improve our technique.<<

If you're going to be staining liver biopsy specimens (by far the most
common use of the trichrome stain by pathologists today, on paraffin
embedded tissue anyhow), your pathologists need a stain with a very
strong blue component (aniline blue or similar), since they're going
to be semi-quantitating small amounts of fibrosis. I've had pretty
good results with commercial trichrome kits, as long as they're not
used past their expiration dates.

You should use liver tissue - it can be normal, though better with a
little fibrosis - as your stain control. Autopsy material is quite

Better talk this over with your pathologists before proceeding. I'll
be happy to e-mail with them if it'll help.

Bob Richmond
Samurai Pathologist
Knoxville TN

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