[Histonet] Changing solutions on VIP processors.

WILLIAM DESALVO wdesalvo.cac <@t> hotmail.com
Mon Dec 6 21:05:21 CST 2010

I suggest to develop the best quality standard for processing, you must first develop or decide what the quality parameters will be that dictates a rotation or changing of a reagent. Have you determined what constitutes a "dirty" or unacceptable reagent? Create and run a test method validation protocol to define the quality parameters.
Your particular mix of tissues types and the number of cassettes processed are important indicators, but what how do you determine when a reagent is unacceptable? Have you measured the particulate matter, concentration of solution, carryover from one reagent type the the next? Define the parameters first and then you can set the standard, for your lab and mix of tissues, that will provide consistent and quality results, each and every time. Make sure you include the pathologist, as he/she is a critical end point QC for your process. Make sure you are meeting your most important customer's needs.
I believe that testing and then defining set standards will allow you to best manage the reagents used on the processors and the process, while providing the best and consistent quality. Making a guess for when the reagents should be changed for multiple processors or relying on anecdotal information from labs that do not gross the same as our lab, have the same daily tissue sample mix as you lab or have the same quality standards you have, can only lead to inconsistent and possibly wasteful use of reagents or unacceptable processed tissue samples. Use standardization and quality processes to lead you to better quality results. That is always the goal.  

William DeSalvo, B.S., HTL(ASCP)
wdesalvo.cac <@t> hotmail.com
Date: Fri, 3 Dec 2010 14:02:59 -0500
From: akbitting <@t> geisinger.edu
To: histonet <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu
Subject: [Histonet] Changing solutions on VIP processors.

Hello All,
I'm involved in a debate with a colleague about how frequently the tissue processors need to be changed.
We do roughly 1000 blocks a day on various runs, utilizing 7 tissue processors.
About 100 of those are microwave processed, so I'm subtracting those from the equation.
So 900 blocks (mixed tissues, no breast) divided by 6 conventional processors is 150 blocks each.
I think it's poor reagent management to change a VIP after 150 blocks. Does anyone disagree with me?
If these were processing very fatty tissue, I might think differently, but that's not the case.
All opinions are welcome.
Angela Bitting, HT(ASCP), QIHC
Technical Specialist, Histology
Geisinger Medical Center 
100 N Academy Ave. MC 23-00
Danville, PA 17822
phone  570-214-9634
fax  570-271-5916 
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