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Practical laboratory techniques

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Abstract

This chapter is designed to give information on health and safety in the practice laboratory, the maintenance and use of laboratory equipment, the Collection, preparation and preservation of samples, and techniques for the laboratory tests commonly performed in veterinary practice. This includes blood samples; urine; faeces; body fluids; fine needle aspiration and skin and hair sampling.

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Figures

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10.9 Microhaematocrit centrifuge. Tubes are placed on opposite sides of the centrifuge to ensure that the drum is balanced during spinning.
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10.10 Appearance of a capillary tube after centrifugation.
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10.13 Preparing a blood smear by the draw back and push away method.
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10.14 Examples of good and bad blood smears. (Adapted from )
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10.18 Haemocytometer grid. To perform a white cell count, the numbers of white cells in the squares marked W, X, Y and Z are totalled and multiplied by 50. When a red cell count is being performed the squares marked A, B, C, D and E are totalled and divided by 100. When performing a red cell count, dilute blood to 1 in 200 with 3% sodium citrate and 40% formol saline.
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10.19 Appearance of the common white blood cells following staining with Leishman’s. Canine eosinophil and neutrophil. Note the granular appearance in the cytoplasm of the eosinophil. Both cells have a segmented nucleus. Canine lymphocyte. Note the large rounded nucleus with little cytoplasm. Feline neutrophils. Note the segmented nuclei. Some of these neutrophils are giant neutrophils, which are produced in association with severe inflammation.
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10.20 Feline blood smear stained with Diff-Quik. Note the appearance of the neutrophils (N) and platelets (P). Platelets can sometimes be hard to see; if this is a problem, the slide should be dipped into the final stain (purple) seven times instead of five as this increases platelet staining. Blood smear from a bird. The red cells are nucleated, which makes it difficult for automated analysers to differentiate them from white blood cells. (b, Courtesy of John Chitty)
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10.24 Summary of the tests used in routine urinalysis.
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10.26 Microscopic appearance of some of the common urinary crystals. Struvite (triple phosphate) crystals. Calcium oxalate crystals. Calcium carbonate crystals. Ammonium urate crystals.
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10.29 Identification of the common intestinal parasites of dogs and cats.
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10.37 Appearance of the common mites of the dog and cat. . adult. eggs (high magnification). mites and eggs collected from the dorsum of a Boxer. (a–d, © A. Foster/S. Shaw, University of Bristol; e, reproduced from )
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10.41 Inoculating an agar plate using the streaking method. The loop should be flamed and cooled between each ‘streaking’.

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