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Haematology

The Haematology Laboratory provides laboratory tests for the diagnosis and treatment of blood cell and coagulation disorders. We provide services covering Auckland City Hospital, Starship Children’s Hospital and Greenlane Clinical Centre sites. We are a major referral centre for New Zealand and the South Pacific. The highly skilled scientific and technical staff work together with a team of haematologists to provide a quality service with in depth clinical interpretation.

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This service incorporates Automation 24/7 which includes the automated Full Blood Count with associated tests and coagulation, and cellular morphology.

Automation 24/7

The automated Haematology section operates 24/7 and processes samples for Full Blood Counts and Haemostasis investigations which require a fast turn around time. In addition specific bleeding or thrombotic testing is offered with a 2 week turn around time. Advanced computer assisted algorithms are used to analyse the analyser results and identify specimens that need further testing.

Full Blood Count

A standard full blood count including a differential (automated or manual) is available on a 24/7 service. A sophisticated rules algorithm is used to determine whether blood film examination and specialist review and comment are required. Additional automated parameters include Reticulocyte and Ret –He. ESR (automated or manual) is also available.

Coagulation

The role of the coagulation department is to provide testing of the haemostasis system. This mainly involves screening for bleeding disorders and monitoring anticoagulant therapy. Additional more specialised investigations are also available, including testing for platelet function, coagulation factor activity and inhibitors, von Willebrand’s disease, inherited Thrombophilia, Lupus Anticoagulant and Heparin induced thrombocytopenia.

Our Registrars and Haematologists are available both for advice and for interpretation of results.

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Cellular Morphology

Microscopic examination of peripheral blood films as part of a Full Blood count is a service offered 24/7.

After analysis on the Haematology Analyser results are compared to reference values and previous results. A complex algorithm generates blood film requests on samples requiring manual examination.

Peripheral blood film examination includes a comment on morphology of red cells, platelets and white cells. The automated white cell diifferential is verified or a manual differential is performed if required.

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Section Leader Laura Graham

This section includes Special Haematology and Cell Markers.

Special Haematology

We perform a variety of diagnostic tests on peripheral blood, bone marrow and CSF for the detection of a range of disorders. Our investigations aid in the diagnosis of haemoglobinopathies, red cell enzyme deficiencies, Infectious Mononucleosis (rapid screen test), Neutrophil function abnormalities, malaria infection, leukaemia, CNS monitoring for relapses of malignancies and feto-maternal haemorrhages.

Cell Markers

Cell Markers include Diagnostic Immunophenotyping, Stem Cell Transplantation, and Immune Deficiency.

Diagnostic Immunophenotyping

We provide a comprehensive flow cytometry service for malignancy diagnosis and disease monitoring for the greater Auckland and Northland areas. The majority of our work involves leukaemia and lymphoma diagnosis in partnership with our Haematologists and Pathologists.

We also perform Immunocytochemical staining. We are involved with clinical trials for these patient populations. Samples processed include peripheral blood, bone marrow, CSF, FNAs, tissues and other body fluids.

Stem Cell Transplantation

Our laboratory is an integral part of the FACT accredited adult and paediatric Transplantation service for Auckland City Hospital and Starship hospital. We monitor CD34 levels and evaluate the quality of cells for transplantation on both fresh and post cyropreserved samples. Our service handles transplantation of mobilised stem cells, bone marrow and cord blood from local and international centres.

Immune Deficiency

A range of investigations are performed for the diagnosis and monitoring of immune deficiency states. These include CD4/8, leucocyte adhesion markers and Neutrophil Oxidative Burst by flow cytometry, Memory / Naive.B and T cell assays and specialised cultures for lymphocyte function.

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