oa Southern African Journal of Anaesthesia and Analgesia - Intraoperative point-of-care testing : SASA refresher course texts

Volume 20, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 2220-1181
  • E-ISSN: 2220-1173



Point-of-care devices offer an increasing number of analytical tests more quickly than laboratory analysis, but clinicians must be aware of the limitations of these devices, especially for critical threshold-level decisions. Glucometers are susceptible to a wide range of errors, and only a few haemoglobin-measuring devices have accuracy approaching that of laboratory analysis. Activated coagulation time remains a useful but error-prone test for heparin effects. Thromboelastography and thromboelastometry offer insight into coagulation defects superior to conventional assays. Multi-function testers provide cardiac enzyme and lactate analysis that is becoming vital for intraoperative decision-making.

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