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Beaumont Laboratory

Serum Viscosity

Viscometry, Antrim #31589, EPIC: LAB5882, SOFT: VISCO

Specimen Collection Criteria

Collect: One Gold-top SST tube.

Physician Office/Drawsite Specimen Preparation

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

Preparation for Courier Transport

Transport: Centrifuged collection tube, refrigerated (2-8 °C or 36-46 °F). (Min: 0.6 mL serum)

Rejection Criteria

  • Hemolyzed specimens.
  • Lipemic specimens.


Specimen Stability for Testing:

Centrifuged SST Tubes and Microtainers® with Separator Gels
Room Temperature (20-26°C or 68-78.8°F): 8 hours
Refrigerated (2-8°C or 36-46°F): 4 days
Frozen (-20°C/-4°F or below): Unacceptable

Red-top Tubes and Microtainers® without Separator Gels
Room Temperature (20-26°C or 68-78.8°F): 2 hours
Refrigerated (2-8°C or 36-46°F): Unacceptable
Frozen (-20°C/-4°F or below): Unacceptable

Serum Specimens (Pour-Overs)
Room Temperature (20-26°C or 68-78.8°F): 8 hours
Refrigerated (2-8°C or 36-46°F): 4 days
Frozen (-20°C/-4°F or below): 1 month

Specimen Storage in Department Prior to Disposal:

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


Royal Oak Special Testing Laboratory.


Monday - Friday.
Results available within 3 days.

Reference Range

1.0-2.0 cP.

Test Methodology

Cone-Plate Viscometer.


The threshold at which clinical symptoms occur varies from patient to patient. Waldenstrom's macroglobulenemia patients with serum viscosities greater than 3.0 may present with symptoms. However severe symptoms do not usually occur until the viscosity is greater than 7.0-10.0. Patients with multiple myeloma usually present with symptoms when their serum viscosity is 6-7.

Clinical Utility

Serum viscosity measurements are used to detect hyperviscosity syndrome. Hyperviscosity syndrome is a condition that occurs when plasma contains hyperviscous, temperature-sensitive paraproteins, or their aggregates in abnormal amounts. This syndrome is commonly seen in patients with monoclonal and polyclonal immunoglobulin disorders such as Waldenstrom's macroglobulinemia, multiple myeloma, and certain autoimmune and rheumatic diseases.

Clinical Disease

The clinical manifestations of hyperviscosity syndrome (HVS) may include irregular dilation of retinal veins, retinal hemorrhage, mucosal bleeding, prolonged bleeding after trauma or surgery, headaches, coma, dizziness, vertigo, seizures, EEG changes, hearing loss, renal insufficiency, and congestive heart failure secondary to expanded plasma volume.

CPT Code


Test Codes

Antrim #31589, EPIC: LAB5882, SOFT: VISCO

Last Updated


Microtainer® and Vacutainer® are registered trademarks of Becton, Dickinson and Company.
UroVysion® is a registered trademark of Abbott Laboratories. ThinPrep® is a registered trademark of Hologic, Incorporated.

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