You are on page 1of 1

Blood Collection Tubes Order of Draw

Blood collection tubes must be filled in a specific sequence to minimize contamination of sterile specimens,
avoid possible test result error caused by carryover of additives between tubes, and reduce the effect of
microclot formation in tubes. When collecting blood samples, allow the tube to fill completely to ensure the
blood/additive ratio necessary for accurate results. Gently invert each tube the required number of times
immediately after collection to adequately mix the blood and additive. Never pour blood from one tube into
another tube. See www.calgarylabservices.com/lab-services-guide/lab-tests/ for specific information
for the collection and handling of each laboratory test.
Order
of Color Invert Additive Comments and Common Tests
Draw
1 Clear Not required No additive Tube used ONLY as a discard tube.

2 Blood Culture Bottle Invert gently Bacterial growth When a culture is ordered along with any other
(aerobic, anaerobic and to mix medium and blood work, the Blood Cultures MUST be drawn
pediatric bottles have activated charcoal first. Refer to
different colors of label http://www.calgarylabservices.com/lab-
and top) services-
guide/microbiology/Test/Tests/Blood-
Cultures.htm for order of draw for Blood Culture
bottles.
3 Yellow with clear label 8 to 10 times Sodium polyanethol Tube used for Mycobacteria (AFB) blood culture.
sulfonate (SPS)

4 Royal Blue (with red Not required Glass tube with no Tube used for serum trace element tests.
band on label) additive Available from CLS Referrals

5 Red GLASS Not required Glass tube with no Tube used for serum tests, which CANNOT be
additive collected in SST tubes. NOTE: red PLASTIC tubes
are preferable for lab tests.
6 Light Blue 3 to 4 times 3.2% buffered Tube used mainly for PT (INR), PTT, and other
Sodium citrate coagulation studies.
anticoagulant

7 Black 3 to 4 times 3.2% Sodium Tube used for ESR ONLY.
citrate anticoagulant

8 Red 5 times Clot activator, and Tube used for serum tests, which CANNOT be
no anticoagulant collected in SST tubes.

9 Gold or Orange 5 times Gel separator and Gold top tubes are referred to as “SST” (serum
clot activator separator tube) and orange top tubes are
referred to as “RST” (rapid separator tube). After
centrifugation, the gel forms a barrier between
the clot and the serum.
10 Dark Green 8 to 10 times Sodium heparin Tube used mainly for Amino Acids and
anticoagulant Cytogenetics tests.

11 Light Green (mint) 8 to 10 times Lithium heparin Usually referred to as “PST” (plasma separator
anticoagulant and tube). After centrifugation, the gel forms a
gel separator barrier between the blood cells and the plasma.
Tube used mainly for Chemistry tests.
12 Royal Blue (with 8 to 10 times K2EDTA Tube used for plasma and red cell trace element
lavender band on label) anticoagulant tests. Available from CLS Referrals.

13 Royal Blue (with no 8 to 10 times Na2EDTA Tube used for whole blood trace element tests.
band on label) anticoagulant Available from CLS Referrals.

14 Lavender 8 to 10 times K2EDTA Tube used mainly for CBC, pretransfusion testing,
anticoagulant Hemoglobin A1C, and anti-rejection drugs.
Note: EDTA tubes specifically for Catecholamines
also include Sodium metabisulfite.
15 Yellow with yellow 8 to 10 times Acid citrate dextrose Tube used for Tissue Typing and some Flow
banded white label solution ‘A’ (ACDA) Cytometry testing.

16 Grey 8 to 10 times Sodium fluoride and Tube used for Lactate.
Potassium oxalate
anticoagulant

Visit www.Calgarylabservices.com for the most current version of this document

PX-SC460 Order of Draw and Order of Transfer Attachment 1 Rev 1.04 (GTS)