Liver biopsy

(i) Histological evaluation (tissue diagnosis) of adult and paediatric liver disorders

(ii) Activity grading and staging of liver disease

(iii) Cause of liver allograft dysfunction

Sample type and Volume required: 
For routine histology:
Immerse specimen in 10% formal saline in suitable specimen container and transport to the laboratory as soon as possible.

*For TOTAL copper and iron concentrations (non-routine histology):
Place biopsy on filter paper moistened with deionised water and place in a sterile universal container for transport to the lab. If filter paper or deionised water is not available, then place the actual biopsy towards the bottom of the sterile universal and transport.
*Please contact the laboratory when planning the biopsy to ensure that tissue is appropriately harvested / stored / transported.
Turnaround time: 
Written reports (needle and small biopsy specimens) are usually available within one working day of receipt
Special sample instructions: 

i) Poor fixation, delayed immersion in formalin

ii) Failure to label pot with patient name, date of birth and precise identifier

iii) Failure to fill in a consultation-request form, in particular clinical information, source of biopsy and doctor to be notified of findings; with slides or paraffin block, failure to include copy of original (identifying) histopathology report or requisition

Storage and transport: 
The tissue core should be immediately placed (left floating without blotting paper) in a labelled perspex container with 10% formal saline Seal fixed tissue sample in specimen transport bag with sufficient absorbent material to contain the contents in case of leakage. Place in a padded box for transport to destination. Seal accompanying request form in a plastic bag to prevent contamination in case of leakage. Tape the box closed, label as Pathological Specimen and send by registered post or courier
Time limit for extra tests: 
2 to 4 working days for immunohistochemistry and / or in-situ hybridization techniques
Cellular Pathology at Guy's And St Thomas' Hospital
Histology: 0207 188 7188 extension 54611 , Cytology: 0207 188 2915, Oral Pathology: 0207 188 4367
Histopathology & Cytopathology Laboratories
Cellular Pathology
St Thomas' Hospital
North Wing - 2nd Floor
Westminster Bridge Road
London SE1 7EH

Head and Neck/Oral Pathology Laboratory
4th Floor, Tower Wing
Guy's Hospital
Great Maze Pond
London SE1 9RT

For clinical advice or interpretation of results, please contact the laboratory in the first instance.

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Last updated: 07/08/2015