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Activated Clotting Time

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Megan Brashear, CVT, VTS(ECC), demonstrates how to perform an activated clotting time test. With the current backorder of in-house PT/aPTT tests, veterinary staff may be called on to perform this test more frequently.

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Megan Brashear's picture
Megan Brashear


Enrolled: 07/2011

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Tinille McKenzie-Wyatt's picture

Curious why you don't remove the needle and tube top to transfer the sample?

Megan Brashear's picture

Hi Tinille, you certainly can, this tube was supposed to be vacuum sealed so the sample is quickly drawn in, it didn't have great suction as you can see, but you can also remove the stopper and the needle and quickly transfer your sample into the tube.

Megan Brashear's picture

The diatomaceous earth used in this test is a clot activator and will change what the normal values are for the test. If you use a plain red top tube the normal time for a clot to form is different. Look at tube manufacturers directions (if you're using a tube specifically for Activated Clotting Time) and ensure that you are performing the test under controlled circumstances (temperature of tube, etc)

Melinda Striyle's picture

Where do you get these diatomaceous earth grey top tubes? Neither my lab nor my distributor have them

Erin Sochocky's picture

Hi Melinda,
We actually do not stock or use the tubes here. They are very difficult to find, but you may be able to purchase them from Vetlab Supply. "Additional packages of ACTube ACT tubes containing diatomaceous earth are available separately."