Anticoagulants: Heparin and Sodium Heparin Anticoagulants Essay

Submitted By Josh-VanderRoest
Words: 598
Pages: 3

Anticoagulants are substances of the chemical family that a used to prevent blood from clotting. They are used as a preservative in medical testing to keep the blood in the state that it is found inside the body that it is extracted from. That are numerous types of anticoagulants all used for different reasons. The type of anticoagulant used is determined by the procedure that the blood will be used for.
The lavender top tube which goes by the name of EDTA; which is short for Ethylenediaminetetraacetic Acid is an anticoagulant used in hematological procedures. It has to be inverted to prevent coagulation. EDTA is the most common anticoagulant used in blood specimens.
The first anticoagulant is Sodium citrate. Sodium citrate is anhydrous, which means it contains two molecules for water. The sodium citrate tube has a light blue top and is used for coagulation studies. This type of tube needs to be filled completely for the results to be accurate. Potassium Oxalate uses the sodium as a preservative, which preserves the glucose so that you can have a proper full blood sample.
Next I will be covering a specific anticoagulant that goes by the name of; Heparinized Blood Vacutainer Tubes. This specific set of tubes uses a Lithium Heparin anticoagulant or a Sodium Heparin anticoagulant agent. Heparin is used primarily in the treatment and testing of exotic animals, but it is also used in chemistry and biochemistry. Heparin is also one of the only anticoagulants that you can use to collect and determine the pH levels, blood gases, ionized calcium, and the electrolytes in blood.
Lithium heparin is also the most recommended form of heparin because lithium heparin rarely interferes with tests when dealing with other ions, whereas sodium can be more of an interference. Heparin works by a complex that is formed when it meets with antithrombin III. He complex speeds the inhibition of thrombin and prevents clotting or activation of thrombin. Heparin is primarily extracted from the lungs of pigs and cows. Heparin is the chosen way of testing for many in the chemistry and special chemistry fields because of is minimal chelating properties and the relatively low cation concentration. The heparin tubes should be stored at room temperature. The lithium and sodium heparin anticoagulants are only stable for six hours, which means after the six hours is up the test is no longer valid and will have to be run again. Heparin