The effects of modifying proficiency testing materials on thyroid function test results: A College of American Pathologists ligand assay survey study

Bernard W. Steele, David L. Witte, Ronald J. Whitley, George G. Klee, Daniel W. Chan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective. - To gain insight on the matrix effects, and possible clinical implications, resulting from diluting and concentrating proficiency testing survey material used for the measurement of thyroid function tests. Design. - To the standard set of five proficiency survey samples, three supplementary 'Wildcard' samples were added. These additional samples were manufactured by overfilling and underfilling vials prior to lyophilization so as to vary the thyroxine-binding protein concentrations. Survey participants measured thyroxine, free thyroxine, and the triiodothyronine uptake and related tests on the Wildcard samples. In addition, free thyroxine indices were calculated. Setting. - The first mailing of the 1995 College of American Pathologists (CAP) Ligand Assay-Series 1 Survey. Main Outcome Measures. - Results obtained from the regular set of survey samples and the Wildcard set were compared to values expected by the laws of conservation of matter and mass action. Participants. - The approximately 2000 participants of the first mailing of the 1995 CAP Ligand Assay-Series 1 Survey. Results. - Numerous assays systems did not give the predicted results, including all of the single-step radioimmunoassays for free thyroxine and over three quarters of free thyroxine index determinations. Conclusions. - Varying the dilution of proficiency survey material produced results that were not predicted by the laws of conservation of matter and of mass action. Although these observations may have been the result of matrix effects, one cannot rule out the possibility that certain thyroid assays may not work in clinical situations having abnormal thyroxine-binding protein concentrations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1241-1246
Number of pages6
JournalArchives of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Volume121
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Medical Laboratory Technology

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