Choosing the right coagulation analyzer

A coagulation analyzer is a laboratory equipment used to measure the levels of blood coagulation factors. It is also known as a coagulometer, blood coagulation meter or hemostasis analyzer. Hemostasis encompasses all the natural phenomena that stop bleeding resulting, for example, from an injury, trauma or surgery.
Coagulation tests are recommended for patients with blood disorders that can cause bleeding or thrombosis.

View our coagulation analyzers

  • What are the different types of coagulation analyzers?

    Coagulation analyzers are classified based on three criteria: operating mode, number of channels and measurement method.

    • By operating mode
      1. Automatic coagulation analyzers: These are fully automated devices that operate autonomously.
      2. Semi-automatic coagulation analyzers: These models require the intervention of a laboratory technician to prepare and position the samples.
    • By number of channels:
      Coagulation analyzers are also distinguished by the number of channels they have, i.e. the number of samples they can process simultaneously. Most of these devices have between one and ten channels. For example, a four-channel coagulation analyzer can perform four different analyses at the same time.
    • By measurement method:
      1. Coagulometric: this process causes colloidal particles suspended in a liquid to agglomerate and form colloids. It results in thickening or, in other words, coagulation.
      2. Immunological: measures the concentration of a molecule in a blood sample using an antibody or immunoglobulin.
      3. Chromogenic: the process of detecting coagulation factors consists of using specific chromogenic substrates that are broken down into colored products by the metabolism of microorganisms.
      4. Turbidimetric (or immunoturbidimetric): quantifies the degree of turbidity of blood or a blood suspension. To do this, it uses an optical system (spectrophotometer) that measures the decrease in intensity of a light beam of known wavelength that passes through the sample.

    Note that some analyzers combine different measurement methods.

    Horiba automatic coagulation analyzer

    Erba semi-automatic coagulation analyzer

    Classification of analyzers :

    • By operating mode: automatic or semi-automatic
    • By number of channels (number of samples processed simultaneously)
    • By measurement method: coagulometric, immunological, chromogenic or turbidimetric
  • What parameters are measured by coagulation analyzers?

    Coagulation analyzers make it possible to test various parameters in order to determine the patient’s hemostatic status, such as fibrinogen levels, bleeding time, platelet count, etc.

    • Fibrinogen (or factor 1) levels: fibrinogen is a protein produced by the liver. It is essential for the formation of blood clots. This test measures the amount of fibrinogen in the blood.
    • Platelet count: platelets are blood cells that help the blood to clot. This test indicates the number of platelets per microliter of blood.
    • Clot retraction: measuring the decrease in volume of a blood clot. When a blood vessel is injured, platelets aggregate and form a clot at the site of the injury. This clot will act as a plug to stop the bleeding. The clot then retracts, joining the edges of the wound and helping to re-establish the continuity of the vessel.
    • Clotting time: the normal clotting time varies between 12 and 18 minutes, depending on the ambient temperature. For this reason, the temperature at which the test is carried out must be systematically indicated.
    • Prothrombin time (PT): measures the quality of the clotting factors and the time it takes for the blood to clot. In the case of patients treated with oral anticoagulants, the INR (International Normalized Ratio) test is also usually carried out, which standardizes PT results worldwide, regardless of the device used.
    • Activated partial thromboplastin time (aPTT): the partial thromboplastin time (PTT) assesses the body’s ability to form blood clots. The activated partial thromboplastin time is used to test the same functions as the PTT, with the only difference being that an activator is added that accelerates coagulation, resulting in a shorter reference interval.
    • Thrombin time (TT): measures the effectiveness of fibrinogen.

    Together, the results of these tests make up the coagulogram.

  • What are coagulation analyzers used for?

    Coagulation analyzers are used to detect diseases, monitor patients or before surgery.

    • Disease detection: the coagulation analyzer is used to detect cases of hemophilia, liver disease or malabsorption of nutrients.
    • Monitoring patients: its use makes it possible to monitor patients undergoing treatments that may alter their coagulation capacity.
    • Before surgery: a coagulogram is usually performed to assess whether the patient is at greater risk of bleeding during or after a surgical procedure.

    A very low TT level (less than 70%) indicates liver failure (hepatitis, cirrhosis or jaundice) or vitamin K deficiency.

  • What are the different configurations of coagulation analyzers?

    Coagulation analyzers are generally bench-top or portable.

    • Benchtop analyzers: These are relatively compact models designed to be placed on the laboratory bench.
    • Portable analyzers: These models are very practical, especially for carrying out tests at the bedside, also called Point of Care (PoC).

    Dialab portable coagulation analyzer

    Sysmex compact coagulation analyzer

    Diagon benchtop coagulation analyzer

    Wiener Lab benchtop coagulation analyzer

  • How much does a coagulation analyzer cost?

    Depending on the brand, type and number of tests the device can perform, prices can range from a thousand euros to several tens of thousands of euros.

    Automatic analyzers are generally more expensive than semi-automatic ones.

  • Are there any risks associated with using a coagulation analyzer?

    Testing with a coagulation analyzer involves taking a blood sample. This can result in a bruise at the puncture site, but this usually disappears within a few days.

  • Do coagulation analyzers require any special maintenance?

    Coagulation analyzers require very little maintenance. Some models have an automatic daily quality control system.

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