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Verification of the Performance of a Fully Automated Coagulation Analyzer and Ongoing Assessment of External Quality Assurance Results in an Academic Laboratory in South Africa by Susan Louw, Yuen O. Wan, Elizabeth S. Mayne

Background: Verification of the performance of analytical platforms is indicated prior to adoption of new Technology for patient sample analysis. Acceptance criteria for the performance of coagulation analytical platforms are not always readily available and is complicated by the multiple assays and test principles in this section of the clinical laboratory. Coagulation samples are also prone to pre-analytical, post-sample collection variables potentially interfering with accuracy analysis.
Methods: This verification study assessed the accuracy of the automated STAGO STA-R Max® coagulation analyzers by means of a comparison study of results obtained on the previously validated STAGO STA-R Evolution® analyzer for 22 coagulation parameters on 40 individual patient samples for each parameter. Within- and between- run reproducibility on commercial control material, carry-over from abnormal to normal samples and the interference of bilirubin, hemoglobin and lipids on the chromogenic analytical channel were also assessed. Ongoing evaluation of the analyzer performance was assessed by External Quality Assurance (EQA) scheme participation.
Results: The reproducibility (precision) on 2 levels (Normal and Pathological) commercial control material was acceptable with co-efficient of variance (CV) results below the manufacturer target % CVs. The correlation study demonstrated accuracy of results obtained on the analyzers for all parameters except for D-dimers and coagulation Factor VII. Subsequent EQA performance for these two parameters were however satisfactory. Interference
from bilirubin, hemoglobin and lipids did occur in the chromogenic channel. No clinically significant carry over from abnormal to normal samples were observed.
Conclusions: The performance of the STAGO STA-R Max® analyzer is acceptable across the full coagulation test repertoire with the exception of the von Willebrand activity assay. Participation in EQA scheme assessments will be an integral part of ongoing monitoring of the performance of this automated analyzer.

DOI: 10.7754/Clin.Lab.2019.181043