<- Home <- Arhive <- Vol. 21, Issue 3, September 2013

Rom J Leg Med21(3)239-244(2013)
© Romanian Society of Legal Medicine

Carboxyhemoglobin stability evaluation in stored and heattreated biological samples

C. Muresan, I. Talos, V. Sturz, A. Enache

Abstract: The aim of our study was to evaluate the carboxyhemoglobin (COHb) stability in biological samples stored for different periods of time and heated at different temperatures. The variations of the COHb concentration depending on the length of samples storage was investigated on blood samples collected from the medico-legal cases in which the cause of death was carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning. Six and nine months after the first COHb determination a new measurement was made. The differences between the COHb values measured initially and those measured at six and nine months ranged between 3% and 30% and were influenced by the blood quantity in the storage vials. In order to establish the possibility of COHb determination in blood heated at various temperatures, biological samples with 0.03%, 65% and 100% COHb were heated at 60°C, 80°C and 100°C for time intervals ranging between 2 and 20 minutes. Spectrophotometric measurements of COHb can be performed safely from blood samples heated at a temperature of maxim 60°C. Above this temperature, the absorption spectra undergo alterations that provide misleading results. Regarding the samples heated at a temperature higher than 80°C, it was noticed that the alteration of blood is influenced not only by the temperature, but also by the length of the heat treatment.
Keywords: carboxyhemoglobin, stability, storage period, heating temperature.

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