[Histonet] Re: Scale or Balance

Bob Richmond rsrichmond <@t> gmail.com
Wed May 14 19:28:15 CDT 2014

Jessica Piche, HT(ASCP), presumably at Waterbury Hospital in Connecticut,

>>Does anyone know of a good brand/vendor for a balance (with a weighing
dish) for the gross room?<<

You can get excellent top-loading electronic balances from Ohaus or Mettler
or others, for two or three hundred dollars each. These are sold through
the standard vendors like whatever Scientific Products is called this week.

You must know exactly what you want, and I expect your pathologists to know
this. Balance specifications change rapidly as manufacturers improve their
products, so that catalog numbers won't help you much.

For ordinary gross room use, you want a balance that will weigh in gram
increments up to a kilogram or so, so you can weigh 10 grams of prostatic
chips or 600 grams of placenta with decent precision and accuracy.

For weighing parathyroid specimens, you need to be able to weigh in 10 mg
increments, up to a few hundred or thousand milligrams. Weighing
parathyroids is standard of care, and if your pathologists and your MBAs
don't know it you need to tell them. That's going to take a second balance.
(Tip - if your hospital pharmacy still does a little compounding, they may
have the right balance. One of my hospitals keeps its old balance around,
just for me.)

Two caveats you wouldn't think of - unlike the platform balances of yore,
electronic balances need replacing fairly often. And druggies will steal
your balances to weigh out illegal drugs - in some venues, you have to lock
your balances up when you're not using them.

More information about the Histonet mailing list