Improving manual differential white cell counts with cytochemistry

L. Ornstein, H. Ansley, A. Saunders

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

58 Scopus citations


New suspension and smear methods are described for increasing the speed and precision of differential white cell counts. In very little more time than it takes to do a 100 cell count using Wright's stained whole blood smears, it is possible to do a 1000 cell count with suspensions of blood samples with normal cell types in which the red cells have been lysed and the white cells have been fixed and specifically stained. A smear method which is especially useful for abnormal cell types is also given. It includes a procedure for preparing buffy coats in which the classes of white cells are in the same proportion to one another as in the whole blood, and for making hand drawn smears that are virtually free of distributional bias. Such smears permit detailed study of cellular morphology and at the same time yield accurate differential counts. A new fixing agent for enzyme staining of dried smears is also described, and a cytochemical staining procedure which differentiates by color among large mononuclear cells. Enzyme stains are employed in both the smear and suspension methods.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)557-585
Number of pages29
JournalBlood Cells
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1976


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