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We Put StainerShield XT Slide Labels To The Test – See How They Withstand the Harshest Histology Processes

Posted On: 
June 6, 2018
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For a histology lab to properly and reliably identify and track specimen slides, each slide must be labeled with information that positively identifies it using both text and barcodes.  

Sounds easy enough, right?  But this is a histology lab, and those slides are going to be subjected to harsh chemicals, stains, reagents, and other processes as the slide is stained. The slide label must stay on the slide, the information must remain readable, and the barcode must always scan, no matter what protocols the histology lab uses to produce their slides.

StainerShield XT xylene and chemical resistant slide labels are designed specifically for use in histology labs.  They can withstand extended exposures to the harshest processes a histology lab can throw at them.  Below are test results that show how StainerShield XT performs in 4 critical areas: exposure to xylene, exposure to reagents and stains, exposure to microwaves, extreme cold and pressure, and archival and retention.

Extended Xylene Exposure

If you are a histology lab needing a xylene-resistant label for your slides, be aware that “xylene resistance” is a claim commonly made by all kinds of labels.  But just how xylene-resistant are they?  We tested StainerShield XT’s resistance to xylene by completely immersing  the label in xylene for 1, 2, 3 and 4 hours:

Before considering any other label, be sure to test and confirm its xylene resistance can match StainerShield XT.

Reagent and Stain Exposure

StainerShield XT can withstand extended exposures to the reagents and stains used in histology staining protocols without fading or absorbing any of the stain color.  In this test, we used a full 18 minute Hematoxylin and Eosin protocol in an automated stainer, as well as complete manual immersion in both Hematoxylin and Eosin:

Note how the hydrophobic properties of StainerShield XT labels prevent any discoloration of the label whatsoever, even after being processed in an automated stainer and being completely immersed manually.

Microwave Processing, Temperature Extremes and Pressure

Microwaves are commonly used in histology labs for slide preparation.  Other commonly-used devices include Decloaking Chambers, Pascal units, and other devices that utilize heat, pressure and high pH buffer solutions for slide preparation.  How well do StainerShield XT slide labels perform when subjected to these environments, as well as temperature extremes?

Retention and Archival

Histology labs are required to retain slides for 10 years – or more in some cases.  In addition to surviving the staining and slide preparation processes, the slide label cannot fall off the slide at any time when it is archived.  StainerShield XT slide labels are certified to meet or exceed retention standards and guidelines from the Library of Congress, CLIA and CAP:

The conclusion?  Histology labs that need slide labels should use the slide labels designed specifically for histology labs: StainerShield XT.