Newcastle Laboratories

Alcohol, serum

Clinical Background:

Determination of alcohol concentration is commonly used for measuring legal impairment, forensic purposes, diagnosis and/or treatment of alcohol dependency, as well as detection of alcohol poisoning.

Determination of alcohol concentration is commonly used for measuring legal impairment, forensic purposes, diagnosis and/or treatment of alcohol dependency, as well as detection of alcohol poisoning.

Test Details

  • Discipline:

    Biochemistry

    Biochemistry

  • Specimen Container Adult:

    Serum-SST

    Serum-SST

  • Specimen Container Paediatric:

    Serum-Plain tube

    Serum-Plain tube

  • Minimum Volume Adult:

    1 mL blood

    1 mL blood

  • Minimum Volume Paediatric:

    0.5 mL blood

    0.5 mL blood

  • Sample Stability:

    Unseparated sample: Same day

    Separated sample:
    at +15° to +25°C 2 days
    at +2° to +8°C 2 weeks 
    at -15° to -25°C 4 weeks

    Unseparated sample: Same day

    Separated sample:
    at +15° to +25°C 2 days
    at +2° to +8°C 2 weeks 
    at -15° to -25°C 4 weeks

  • Interpretation:

    The test results should be interpreted in light of clinical signs and symptoms.
    About 95% of alcohol is metabolised in the liver and the remainder is excreted unchanged.
    The rate of alcohol metabo...

    The test results should be interpreted in light of clinical signs and symptoms.
    About 95% of alcohol is metabolised in the liver and the remainder is excreted unchanged.
    The rate of alcohol metabolism and excretion vary among individuals and are dependent upon factors such as gender, age, body weight, stomach content, use of medication and health condition.
    Alcohol intoxication can lead to birth defects for pregnant women, loss of alertness, stupor, coma and death.

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  • Reference Ranges:

    Not detected (in abstaining subjects)
    Guidance level: legal limit for driving is 800 mg/L

    Not detected (in abstaining subjects)
    Guidance level: legal limit for driving is 800 mg/L

  • Factors Affecting Result:

    Do not use alcohol or other volatile disinfectants at the site of venipuncture.

    Do not use alcohol or other volatile disinfectants at the site of venipuncture.

  • Other Info:

    Plasma- Lithium Heparin and Flouride Oxalate also acceptable

    Plasma- Lithium Heparin and Flouride Oxalate also acceptable

  • Routine Contact Name:

    Duty Biochemist

  • Routine Telephone:

    Freeman: 0191 244 8889
    RVI: 0191 282 9719

    Freeman: 0191 244 8889
    RVI: 0191 282 9719

  • Routine Email:

    - For external users: TNU-Tr.duty.biochemist@nhs.net

    - For Trust users: DutyBiochemist@nuth.nhs.uk

Availability:

All times
All sites

Turn Around:

Urgent: within 1 hour; non-urgent: within 1 day

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