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Beaumont Laboratory

Valproic Acid Level

Depakene, Depakote, Valproate, Valproex, Valproic Acid Level, Serum, Antrim #17139, EPIC: LAB5429, SOFT: VALPA

Specimen Collection Criteria

Collect (preferred specimen): One plain Red-top tube. (Minimum Whole Blood: 1.0 mL)
Also acceptable (not preferred): One Gold-top SST tube.

Time of Collection: Trough, just prior to the next dose.
Record the exact time of specimen collection on the tube or in the computer system.

Physician Office/Drawsite Specimen Preparation

Let specimens clot 30-60 minutes and refrigerate (2-8°C or 36-46°F) the collection tube within two hours of collection. (Min: 1.0 mL blood)

Preparation for Courier Transport

Transport: Collection tube, refrigerated (2-8°C or 36-46°F). (Min: 1.0 mL blood)

Rejection Criteria

  • Severely lipemic or hemolyzed specimens.


Specimen Stability for Testing:

Collection Tubes
Room Temperature (20-26°C or 68-78.8°F): 2 hours
Refrigerated (2-8°C or 36-46°F): 24 hours
Frozen (-20°C/-4°F or below): Unacceptable

Serum Specimens (Pour-Overs)
Room Temperature (20-26°C or 68-78.8°F): 2 hours
Refrigerated (2-8°C or 36-46°F): 7 days
Frozen (-20°C/-4°F or below): 3 months

Specimen Storage in Department Prior to Disposal:

Refrigerated (2-8°C or 36-46°F): 7 days


Farmington Hills Chemistry Laboratory.
Grosse Pointe Chemistry Laboratory.
Royal Oak Toxicology Laboratory.
Troy Chemistry Laboratory.


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

Reference Range

Patients Less than 15 Years Old
Pediatric Range: 50-150 mcg/mL.
Critical Range: Greater than 200 mcg/mL.

Patients Greater than 15 Years Old
Therapeutic Range:
50-100 mcg/mL.
Critical Range: Greater than 150 mcg/mL.

Test Methodology

Particle Enhanced Turbidimetric Inhibition Immunoassay.


Valproic Acid is susceptible to concentration-dependent plasma protein binding. Increases in plasma or serum concentrations will likely result in increased drug clearance. Valproic Acid will also compete for plasma protein binding sites and has been shown to decrease the binding of other highly bound drugs. Valproic Acid may inhibit the oxidative metabolism of co-administered medications.

Clinical Utility

Valproic acid is a broad-spectrum anticonvulsant drug used alone to treat simple and complex absence seizures and in combination with other anticonvulsant drugs for control of generalized seizures that include absence seizures. This assay is used to monitor the therapeutic drug level and evaluate the toxicity of valproic acid.

CPT Code


Test Codes

Antrim #17139, EPIC: LAB5429, SOFT: VALPA

Last Updated


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This directory currently reflects information only for specimens collected and/or processed at the Farmington Hills, Grosse Pointe, Royal Oak, and Troy campuses.