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Test Code EPO Erythropoietin (EPO), Serum

Reporting Name

Erythropoietin (EPO), S

Useful For

An aid in distinguishing between primary and secondary polycythemia


Differentiating between appropriate secondary polycythemia (eg, high-altitude living, pulmonary disease, tobacco use) and inappropriate secondary polycythemia (eg, tumors)


Identifying candidates for erythropoietin (EPO) replacement therapy (eg, chronic renal failure)


Evaluating patients undergoing EPO replacement therapy who demonstrate an inadequate hematopoietic response

Specimen Required


Preferred: Serum gel

Acceptable: Red top

Specimen Volume: 0.6 mL

Seattle Children's Hospital Note:

Collect 1.5 mL whole blood in a Gold top.

Specimen Type


Specimen Minimum Volume

0.5 mL

Specimen Stability Information

Specimen Type Temperature Time
Serum Refrigerated (preferred) 14 days
  Frozen  14 days

Day(s) and Time(s) Performed

Monday through Friday; 5 a.m.-12 a.m.

Saturday; 6 a.m.-6 p.m.

Performing Laboratory

Mayo Medical Laboratories in Rochester

Method Name

Immunoenzymatic Assay

Method Description

Testing is performed on the Beckman Coulter DxI 800. The Access erythropoietin (EPO) assay is a 2-site immunoenzymatic (sandwich) assay. A sample is added to a reaction vessel along with the paramagnetic particles coated with mouse monoclonal anti-EPO, blocking reagent and the alkaline phosphatase conjugate. After incubation in a reaction vessel, materials bound to the solid phase are held in a magnetic field while unbound materials are washed away. Then, the chemiluminescent substrate Lumi-Phos 530 is added to the vessel and light generated by the reaction is measured with a luminometer. The light production is directly proportional to the concentration of EPO in the sample. The amount of analyte in the sample is determined from a stored, multi-point calibration curve.(Instruction manual: Beckman Coulter Access EPO, Beckman Coulter Access Immunoassay Systems, Beckman Coulter, Inc, Fullerton CA 2009)

Reference Values

2.6-18.5 mIU/mL

Test Classification

This test has been cleared or approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and is used per manufacturer's instructions. Performance characteristics were verified by Mayo Clinic in a manner consistent with CLIA requirements.

CPT Code Information


LOINC Code Information

Test ID Test Order Name Order LOINC Value
EPO Erythropoietin (EPO), S 15061-5


Result ID Test Result Name Result LOINC Value
EPO Erythropoietin (EPO), S 15061-5

Reject Due To


Mild OK; Gross reject


Mild OK; Gross OK





Testing Algorithm

The following algorithms are available in Special Instructions:

-Erythrocytosis Evaluation Testing Algorithm

-Myeloproliferative Neoplasm: A Diagnostic Approach to Bone Marrow Evaluation

-Myeloproliferative Neoplasm: A Diagnostic Approach to Peripheral Blood Evaluation


If not ordering electronically, complete, print, and send 1 of the following forms with the specimen:

General Request Form (T239) (

Benign Hematology Test Request Form (T755) (