What is peripheral blood?
Peripheral blood is the blood circulating through the arteries and veins (not sequestered in the spleen, liver, bone marrow, etc.). It contains red blood cells (erythrocytes), white blood cells (leukocytes), and platelets.
What is the procedure?
Blood draws are usually simple procedures and may be done almost anywhere: in a laboratory, a physician’s office, a hospital, or even sometimes at home. A tourniquet will be placed above the site where the blood will be drawn (usually the inner elbow). The skin will be sterilized, and a needle will be inserted directly into a vein. Blood is then collected into vacuum-sealed tubes that contain preservative agents.
How is peripheral blood tested?
Some of the blood may be smeared onto slides, which can then be stained and examined under a microscope. Blood can also be used for flow cytometry, and sometimes cytogenetics. Nucleic acids (DNA and RNA) can be extracted from the white blood cells for molecular testing.