What color lab tube do I need for a test?

  1. What color is the lab tube for the following tests?
    1. a digoxin level
    2. cbc
    3. chem profile
    4. protime
    5. when you need extra blood just in case another test is called for?
    Last edit by Joe V on Mar 29, '18 : Reason: made numbered list more visible
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    Joined: Sep '08; Posts: 3


  3. by   Smurfette752
    I just finished phlebotomy school and I'm starting nursing school in January...I do not remember the digoxin (gray top maybe?) But the CBC is a purple top, the chem is a tiger top or a orangeish yelloe top, and the pt is a blue top. Extra blood, well that depends, because they all have dfferet additives in the tubes? Maybe a redtop or a pink top?
  4. by   Daytonite
  5. by   lilo2010
    Hey! Former lab tech here!
    CBC-Purple(EDTA)tube dig/chem-red top(no additive)
    PT-blue top xtra-purple & red
    Dig & Chem requirements can vary for different facilities. But that is the standard.
  6. by   laurabeth84
    1 a digoxin level
    red or gray

    2 cbc

    3 chem profile
    green or yellow

    4 protime
    blue filled atleast 95% of the tube

    5 when you need extra blood just in case another test is called for?
    when your drawning a pt it is best to get whatever tubes you are able to draw i.e. you have an order for a CBC, CMP, SPE, and an ESR, this pt is about to have surgery so I would draw a purple, green, yellow, red, pink and a blue (if i am able to)(* but if not just a purple, green, yellow, and a blue*), just incase the doctor order a TYPE & SCREEN, PT/PTT, or something of the wall you will have the extra pink, red, and blue but in all fairness in this case your red top would be your extra if all of the above test where ordered
  7. by   laurabeth84
  8. by   dandk1997RN
    I'm in charge of the outpatient lab where I work, and all I can tell you about this situation is that if you are doing this for an assignment and your school is affiliated with a specific facility, you're not necessarily going to get the answers correct no matter how many friendly people try to help.

    Requirements vary from facility to facility depending on the instrumentation they use and the tube manufacturer. A lav. for a cbc and a light blue for a PT are fairly standard, but beyond that, the tube colors vary greatly. Heck, in my hospital, the requirements vary from department to department. For example, most chemistry specimens require serum. If you are in OP or on the floors at my facility, you might draw this in a red (clot) or gold (serum separator) tube, but if you work in the ED, you need to draw light green. Our requirements are quite different from those of LabCorp, which many of my staff learn the hard way when they come from them to us (such as the guy who had to redraw blood cultures times 2 because LC doesn't require cleaning the tube tops.)

    My point is just that if this is for an assignment, you might want to check your book or with the facility you are associated with, because there is definitely variance. FWIW, every single one of the answers already given has something that doesn't jibe with my particular hospital.

    Good luck!!!!
  9. by   dandk1997RN
    Oh, hahaha! I just realized this question is two years old. I'm pretty sure you probably already got this all figured out.
  10. by   TheSquire
    call the lab and ask
  11. by   tinkbrockway
    What color is the lab tube for the following tests?
    1 a digoxin level YELLOW
    2 cbc PURPLE/lavendar
    3 chem profile YELLOW/GREEN
    4 protime BLUE
    5 when you need extra blood just in case another test is called WE USE AND EXTRA PUPRLE WHEN WE DRAW
  12. by   MsgValadez
    I have never heard of any lab drawing a yellow or gray top tube for a digixon level, as some people on here have advised. Yellow top tubes are mostly used for HLA testing and gray top for glucose, lactic acid and in some labs for medical alcohol levels.

    As someone stated, you have to check on the protocal of the lab that is going to be doing your testing. You may get general information about testing but I wouldn't trust that info until I verified it with your institution. Especially with uncommon tests that are ordered.