Hormone testing

We have had some debate in Australia regarding the usefulness of LOINC codes for hormone levels. A good example is Beta HCG. There are approximately 11 different isoforms and depending on the mix measured by the instrument, you will see a large variety in the reference range and results. So the upshot is, results that are performed with, say an Abbott instrument (eg. Architect) should probably not be grouped with a result from a Siemens instrument (eg. Centaur). This is a particular problem in Australia where a G.P. may send a patient to lab A one week and lab B the next , and the labs may have different instrumentation. Does anyone have a solution for this issue? Can we have method based codes in this area?

Michael Osborne

Pathology IT

Mater Health Services