In this month’s “Hot Topic,” Paul Jannetto, Ph.D., discusses the high-resolution targeted opioid screening test from Mayo Clinic Laboratories, which offers sensitivity and specificity for use in the monitoring and management of patients who are prescribed opioid pain-relieving medication.
Chromium and cobalt blood tests are used to monitor exposure to these elements. Both of these elements are naturally occurring and widely distributed in the environment. Previously, serum samples were collected and used to monitor patients with metal-on-metal implants, but serum can easily be contaminated during the harvesting and separation of the serum from the cellular blood components causing incorrect results. By using the new EDTA anticoagulated whole-blood test, which is collected in a trace element tube instead of using serum, the risk of contamination is significantly reduced.