Introduction: ROTEM® is considered a helpful point-of-care device to monitor blood coagulation. Centrally performed analysis is desirable but rapid transport of blood samples and real-time transmission of graphic results are an important prerequisite. The effect of sample transport through a pneumatic tube system on ROTEM® results is unknown. The aims of the present work were (i) to determine the influence of blood sample transport through a pneumatic tube system on ROTEM® parameters compared to manual transportation, and (ii) to verify whether graphic results can be transmitted on line via virtual network computing using local area network to the physician in charge of the patient.
Methods: Single centre study with 30 normal volunteers. Two whole blood samples were transferred to the central haematology laboratory by either normal transport or pneumatic delivery. EXTEM, INTEM, FIBTEM and APTEM were analysed in parallel with two ROTEM® devices and compared. Connection between central laboratory, emergency and operating rooms was established using local area network.
Results: All collected ROTEM® parameters were within normal limits. No statistically significant differences between normal transport and pneumatic delivery were observed. Real-time transmission of the original ROTEM® curves using local area network is feasible and easy to establish.
Conclusion: At our institution, transport of blood samples by pneumatic delivery does not influence ROTEM® parameters. Blood samples can be analysed centrally, and results transmitted live via virtual network computing to emergency or operating rooms. Prior to analyse blood samples centrally, the type of sample transport should be tested to exclude in vitro blood activation by local pneumatic transport system.