Sample Materials

It is important for us to support you with instructions for sample collection so that the quality of the sample and results are optimized. A prerequisite for a meaningful analysis is always having the correct sample and treating it appropriately. The most common error in the preanalytic is confusing one sample for another. In our Analysis Directory you can find parameters for each test as well as the information regarding sample sizes, special aspects of collecting the sample and how to store it.

Blood, Serum, Plasma

Blood is drawn from the veins, arteries and capillaries. It coagulates in the test tubes in the absence of any anti-coagulants. After about 30 minutes, a clear supernatant called serum forms. Substances such as citrate, EDTA, heparin, or hirudin inhibit clotting. The plasma is the supernatant of anti-coagulated blood after centrifugation.

To avoid mixing samples up, test tubes must be labeled with a barcode or name, first name, and birthdate. Our data sheets provide further information regarding Blood drawing, Centrifugation, obtaining blood cultures and bone marrows, and producing a blood smear.


Many quantitative measurements in urine can only be compared and assessed if it relates to daily excretion. Because this varies widely, a 24 hr urine collection should be carried our according a a defined specification - see leaflet 24-hr urine collection. For test strip tests, urine sediment, and other urine tests midstream urine is used - see leaflet urine.

Cerebrospinal fluid, Punktate

Cerebrospinal fluid is a clear protein and cell poor liquid that is produced in the central nervous system (brain, spine). To obtain cerebrospinal fluid, the lumbar vertebrae btween (LWK) 3 and 4 or between LWK 4/5 is punctured while the patient is sitting or lying down. See our instructions for obtaining cerebrospinal fluid. Please also read the leaflet for obtaining punctate.


All secretions should be obtained from the site of infection and contamination from the resident flora there should be avoided if possible. Information regarding eye, nose, throat, vaginal, urethra, and anus swabs can be found in our

Sekrete sollten gezielt aus dem Infektionsbereich gewonnen und die Kontamination mit der Standortflora dabei möglichst vermieden werden. Hinweise zu Augen-, Nasen-, Rachen-, Vaginal-, Urethra- und Anus-Abstrichen enthält unser leaflet swabs.


Morning sputum is best for a sputum sample. It the secretion that is coughed out of the deep airways first thing in the morning (no saliva). Please read the recommendation for obtaining sputum samples and bronchial secretions.


The conditions for collect stool can differ depending on the pathogen - see information for collecting stool. More information can be found in the analysis directory.

Sample Storage

The storage of specimens until they are collected differs depending on the sample. Please note the information on the storage condtions of various specimens.