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The Order of Draw for Blood Tubes - Mobile Phlebotomy and Paramedical Examiner Job Leads

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Order of Draw for Blood Tubes

Note: The order of draw may be a little different, in some hospital settings, as the black top tube, may or may not be used.




Blood Culture Tube


Sodium Citrate

PT,PTT, APTT - All Coagulation Studies


No Additive (Serum tube)

Electrolyte, Lipid Panel, Hepatic Function, Digoxin, Bilirubin, HCG (pregnancy)


Sodium Heparin or Lithium Heparin

Ammonia Level



CBC, Hemoglobin, Hematocrit, ESR - Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate


Potassium Oxalate, Sodium Fluoride

All Glucose Studies - Anticoagulant

Tiger Top Tube/Gold Tube (Polymer Gel) Can be used as Red Tube. This tube is spun around in the centrifuge.

Tiger Top Tube/Gold Tube (Polymer Gel) Can be used as Red Tube. This tube is spun around in the centrifuge.

Remember the order of draw:

You, Bring, Really, Good, Lollipops, Girl = Yellow, Blue, Red, Green, Lavender, Gray

Evacuated Collection Tubes

The "evacuated collection tubes" are glass or plastic and differs in length from 65mm - 127mm, the outside diameter of 10mm, 13mm, or 16mm. The mechanism of the rubber stopper on the tube has changed because of the increase of blood and body fluid precautions. The traditional rubber stopper popped as the top was removed to access the specimen. This created an aerosol that could be inhaled or ingested.

Expiration Date on Blood Tubes

Health care professionals have to acknowledge that blood tubes have an expiration date, to indicate when the tube should no longer be used. The tubes are good until the end of the month stamped on the tube. After the expiration date, the vacuum will possibly not fill the tube completely and the additives are not guaranteed to perform as it should. Using tubes past the expiration date affects the specimen and can give questionable results.

Upgrades of Blood Tubes

Tubes made from plastic are now used more commonly in health care settings. Different additives are added to the tubes to improve the quality of the specimen. These "additives" are not anticoagulants or preservatives but are used to improve specimen quality or to accelerate specimen processing. These tubes have a red stopper, red/black stopper, or gold stopper (Hemogard tube), depending on the manufacturer. The glass surface of a glass tube for serum testing will activate clot formation in the tube. Some glass serum tubes have a clot activator added to speed the clotting process. A plastic tube will not activate a clot; therefore a clot activator must be added to each tube during manufacture. This clot activator consists of silica particles on the sides of the tubes that initiate the clotting process.

Serum and plasma tubes can also be purchased with a thixotropic separator gel. This gel is and inert material that undergoes a temporary change in viscosity during centrifugation. It has a density that is intermediate to cells/clot and plasma/serum. When centrifuged, the gel moves up the side of the tube and engulfs the cells/clot, and an interface of gel forms that separates the cells/clot from the plasma/serum.

♥ Also, all blood tubes have a draw line on the tube, but the blue tube must be a full draw. ♥

Glucose Testing

Diabetes mellitus is a complicated disease that may cause more complications for the patient than just an increased blood glucose level. A person with diabetes mellitus often develop blindness (retinopathy), kidney damage (nephropathy), heart disease (cardiovascular disease), and circulatory problems that can result in tissue damage and amputation. Hyperglycemia is the signal that a person might have diabetes mellitus. The American Diabetes Association classifies diabetes as type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes, and prediabetes.

  • Prediabetes; Prediabetes is when a patient's blood glucose is higher than normal but not high enough to be classified as diabetic.
  • Type 1; The patient with type 1 diabetes is deficient in insulin production by the pancreas or in insulin function.
  • Type 2; 80 - 90% of diabetes patients have type 2 diabetes. Most patients of this type have a normal insulin concentration but lack relative insulin activity.

Fasting Glucose

The first step most physicians take in diagnosis diabetes is to draw a fasting plasma glucose for the patient. If the FPG level is greater than or equal to 126 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl), the patient is diabetic.

Glucose Tolerance Test

The oral glucose tolerance test (GTT) detects borderline diabetes by measuring the patient's ability to dispose of a large oral intake of glucose.

A few of the factors can affect glucose tolerance and should be controlled before the test is performed. When a GTT is ordered, the patient should omit medications that are known to affect a glucose tolerance, have three days of unrestricted diet, and have unrestricted activity. The test should then be performed in the morning after an 8 - 16 hour fast. The patient should not be allowed coffee or cigarettes and should try to keep anxiety to a minimum.

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Order of Draw Tubes

Order of Draw Tubes

List of Paramedical Exam Companies - Job Leads

For Insurance Exams

  1. Medic Exams, 1888-567-6688 phone
  2. APPS - American Para Professional Systems, 209-340-8700 phone
  3. EMSI branch 774-701, 949-678-5866 phone, 951-352-0083 fax
  4. EMSI # 183, 661-296-5035 phone, 661-296-5564 fax
  5. ExamOne corporate, 1-866-795-7110 phone, 1-888-419-3926 phone
  6. IPS National, 503-922-0315 phone, 503-333-5118 phone, 1-877-268-1021 toll free, 1-877-568-3093 fax
  7. Professional Health Examiners, 818-788-3926, 818-788-0090
  8. Superior Mobile Medics, 619-814-0101 phone, 1-866-673-5841 phone, 1800-898-3926 toll free, 1-866-761-1143 fax

Once you establish a business relationship with these Paramedical Exam Companies, you would need to set up a filing system. All patients and exam companies' files should be kept in a mini file cabinet. Also most of the Paramedical Exam Companies hire Independent Contractors "nationally," so it wouldn't matter what state you're in. You can work for them doing exams in your local area or farther. Keep the enthusiasm and know that your phlebotomy skill gets better with time.

How to Test for Glucose Blood Levels

© 2011 Brinafr3sh


Charmaine Webster from New York on November 13, 2018:

Great Article!

Hashp from india on August 20, 2017:

Nicely written and informative article.

Brinafr3sh (author) from West Coast, United States on January 28, 2016:

Thank you Susan from Perfection Paramedical, I hope potential Paramedical Examiners/Phlebotomist email you for a job; in Ohio, Indiana, and Michigan.

Brinafr3sh (author) from West Coast, United States on August 05, 2015:

Hi, yes I do have IMS for "insurance forms" on the "List of Supplies for Paramedical Examiners" site. Thank you. Here's the IMS Job lead for Paramedical Examiners - copy and paste your resume' into the experience box. (Also call for a login ID and password). Examiner login.

Bill on July 29, 2015:

How about adding IMS to the job leads since you have their website listed for forms? Just a thought :)

Brinafr3sh (author) from West Coast, United States on November 15, 2013:

Hi Zena your welcome, no problem. I believe the medical field is one of the best fields to work in.

Zena on June 14, 2013:

Great information! I am a MA and this just gives me a helpful reminder. Appreciate the wonderful information

vicki on June 03, 2013:

really good information.

Brinafr3sh (author) from West Coast, United States on November 19, 2012:

Hi Christine, every healthcare laboratory or clinic might not use gold or light green tubes for the same test that another healthcare place might use them for. As mentioned above in the article; some healthcare groups may use different color tubes than another healthcare group.

Christine on November 18, 2012:

What about PST and SST in the acronym? Gold and light green?

A student who flunked on November 16, 2012:

Thank you for your time and this is so helpful, you are a cool girl

and should be an instructor.

Brinafr3sh (author) from West Coast, United States on June 17, 2011:

Hi Antonio, that's good to know. Thank you for commenting.

Antonio Sotelo on June 17, 2011:

Excellent work Brinafr3sh. You really know your phlebotomy. I am also at as infectious disease examiner. Keep up the good work.

Brinafr3sh (author) from West Coast, United States on June 17, 2011:

Hi phlebotomy training. Your welcome, I will be updating this page with more useful information. Your welcomed to bookmark this page to your favorites.

Phlebotomy Training on June 17, 2011:

It is a nice and informative post that may be helpful to general public. I want to thank you for this.

Brinafr3sh (author) from West Coast, United States on April 21, 2011:

@ Antonio Sotelo thanks for commenting, and yes this article will benefit those most who are in the medical field, as I am. :)

Antonio Sotelo from El Paso, Texas on April 21, 2011:

This is an excellent article that can benefit the general public. Keep up the good work.

Brinafr3sh (author) from West Coast, United States on April 16, 2011:

@ Dichter1993 and Treasuresofheaven, thanks for your comments visit again. :)

Sima Ballinger from Michigan on April 10, 2011:

Next time I have blood drawn, I will be looking at the color of the tubes. I like this, thanks for explaining the blood drawing set-up.

dichter1993 on March 28, 2011:

This is informative. But in the coolest of ways.

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