What is the Effect of Heparin in Making Sample of Blood-gas Analysis
Heparin is an anticoagulants naturally exists in all mammals, and named it when it’s isolated from liver tissue in 1916. Heparin is synthesized in mast cells and basophils and stored in the secretory granules of these cells. Since mast cells are present in many tissue cells, heparin can be derived from these kind of extrahepatic tissues. Currently, heparin preparations are often derived from the mucosal intima of pig intestines.
Heparin prevents blood clotting due to the unique pentasaccharide sequence contained in its structure that binds tightly to antithrombin 3, which is a plasma protein that inhibits blood clotting by binding to several activated coagulation contents, such as XIa, Xa, IXa, and IIa (thrombin), which inhibit the activity of enzyme. Heparin blocks the fibrin formed by the coagulation cascade, which is required for blood clotting. This anticoagulant effect of heparin can occur in vitro and in vivo.
Heparin sodium is a natural heparin salt used in medicine and laboratories. Lithium heparin is a vitro anticoagulant used in laboratory, made from sodium heparin by cation exchange chromatography. Heparin is the only anticoagulant used to prepare samples for blood-gas analysis. There are two ways for heparin sodium to interfere results in analysis,one is the high heparin concentrations in the blood, and another is heparin can dilute the blood if liquid rather than dried (lyophilized) heparin is used.
Traditional blood-gas analytes (such as PH, PCO2, and PO2) are less affected than electrolytes (especially ionized calcium), which are also measured by modern blood-gas analyzers. Therefore, if only PH, PCO2, and PO2 are measured, the requirements of blood samples are not too strict for heparin. For that analytes, it is still important that the concentration of heparin (sodium or lithium) is less than 200 IU/mL and the blood dilution can not exceed 5%.
One of the common practical problems related to blood-gas analysis is insufficient anticoagulation and formation of small blood clots, that can block the blood-gas analyzer and invalidate the results. The main reason is inadequate mixing of the sample with heparin. The lower the concentration of heparin, the greater the risk of insufficient anticoagulation with poor mixing techniques
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