Background: International guidelines for plasma preparation are not always observed because high-speed centrifugation reduces turnaround times. This study assessed the effect of rapid centrifugation on sample quality and clotting time.
Methods: Blood samples were obtained from five healthy volunteers. Normal blood samples were spiked with unfractionated heparin to produce abnormal samples. The normal and abnormal coagulation ability samples were centrifuged at 1,500 x g for 15 minutes, 2,000 x g for 10 minutes (both according to international guidelines), or 3,500 x g for 7 minutes (rapid centrifugation). Microparticle procoagulant activity (MP activity), prothrombin time (PT), and activated partial thromboplastin time (APTT) were measured in the supernatant plasma.
Results: Rapid centrifugation caused a significant increase in MP activity compared to the two recommended conditions and significantly shortened clotting times, particularly APTT in the abnormal samples.
Conclusions: Rapid centrifugation should not be used for routine processing of blood samples for coagulopathy screening and monitoring patients on anticoagulant therapy.