Specimen Collection Criteria

Collect: One Gold-top SST tube. (Minimum Whole Blood: 4.0 mL)

Contact the Laboratory for the acceptability of other tube types.

Physician Office/Drawsite Specimen Preparation

Let SST specimen clot 30-60 minutes then immediately centrifuge to separate serum from cells. Refrigerate (2-8°C or 36-46°F) the centrifuged SST tube within two hours of collection.

Preparation for Courier Transport

Transport: Centrifuged SST tube, refrigerated (2-8°C or 36-46°F). (Min: 0.5 mL)

Rejection Criteria

  • Plasma specimens.
  • Severely lipemic or hemolyzed specimens.
  • Red-top tubes with serum not separated from cells within two hours of collection.


0,Centrifuged SST tubes may be transported and stored at ambient temperatures (2o to 30o C; 36o to 86o F) for up to 48 hours. DO NOT FREEZE TUBES CONTAINING BLOOD. For longer storage, the serum should be removed from the gel and refrigerated (2o -8o C) or frozen at -20o C or below.

Red-top tubes and Microtainers® may be stored at ambient temperatures for up to 16 hours and for up to 3 days at refrigerator temperatures (2o - 8o C). DO NOT FREEZE TUBES CONTAINING BLOOD. For longer storage, the serum should be removed from the clot and refrigerated (2o -8oC) or frozen at -20o C or below.

0,Serum specimens (pour-overs) may be stored at room temperature (20o to 26o C; 68o to 79o F) for up to 1 week, refrigerator temperature (2o to 8o C; 36o to 47o F) for two weeks, and at -20o C (-4o F) for up to 3 months. Specimens stored at -70o C (- 94o F) can be stored indefinitely.


Farmington Hills

Sundays – Saturday, day shift only.

Royal Oak

Sunday - Saturday, 24 hours a day.
STAT results available within 1 hour of receipt in the Laboratory.
Routine results available within 4 hours.

Reference Range

40-240 mg/dL.
Newborns reach adult levels at about 4 months of age.

EFFECTIVE DECEMBER 10, 2018; Royal Oak and Troy: 40-250 mg/dL.

Test Methodology



Haptoglobin is decreased in hemolysis, significant liver disease, and less commonly in genetic deficiencies (anhaptoglobinemia, hypohaptoglobinemia). Levels are increased in acute inflammation and with estrogen (oral contraceptive, pregnancy, hormone replacement therapy), androgen and glucocorticoid treatment.

Clinical Utility

Haptoglobin binds to hemoglobin released into the circulation by intravascular hemolysis. Haptoglobin is an acute phase reactant. Serial assays are used to detect and monitor hemolytic states. Haptoglobin is decreased in diseases associated with intravascular hemolysis. In severe hemolysis, haptoglobin may be totally depleted, requiring up to 1 week to return to normal. In chronic hemolytic states such as hemoglobinopathies and mechanical heart valves, there may be a steady decline in haptoglobin levels. In these conditions, serial assays provide a better index of ongoing hemolysis than a single haptoglobin value.

Increased serum haptoglobin levels are present in infection, neoplasia, and other inflammatory conditions characterized by tissue injury and repair.

CPT Code


Test Codes


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