High rates of variability from one drop to another raise questions about the reliability of point of care testing equipment and companies that collect lab specimens only with finger sticks
Since last fall, one news report after another has come out with bad news for Theranos Inc., the high-profile medical laboratory company. The reports have ranged from dissatisfaction among Theranos’ partners, such as Walgreens and Capital BlueCross, to failed inspection reports from the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
In response, the embattled lab company in Palo Alto, Calif., has maintained that it is doing everything it can to correct any deficiencies in its clinical laboratory testing methods and to ensure its partners that its processes are scientifically sound and its methods valid. (more…)
Researchers determined that as many as nine successive capillary blood drops must be collected and tested to achieve results that would be comparable to testing with venous blood
A new study is raising questions about the implications of using fingerprick blood samples for point-of-care tests. Done by researchers at Rice University’s Department of Bioengineering, the study suggests clinicians use measurements with caution when assessing patients’ conditions based on the results of clinical laboratory tests using a single drop of capillary blood collected by fingerstick.
Pathologists and clinical laboratory scientists were quick to call attention to the study, based on the press release Rice University issued. That’s because, for almost 30 years, medical laboratories have struggled to correlate the results for such biomarkers as glucose. It is common for capillary blood specimen collected by finger stick and tested on a point-of-care device to produce different results for the same patient when compared with that of a venous specimen tested on the automated, high-volume analyzes in a central laboratory. The Rice researchers offer useful insights about such variation. (more…)