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Test Code Iron/TIBC Iron Profile

Important Note

No Dark Green/Sodium Heparin or Lt. Green/Li Heparin Microtainer for this test.

Clinical System Name

Iron Profile


Iron Binding Capacity (TIBC)
TIBC (Iron Binding Capacity)

Iron + TIBC + % Saturation


The measurements of serum iron and serum iron-binding capacity are useful in the differential diagnosis of anemia, iron deficiency anemia, thalassemia, possible sideroblastic anemia, and iron poisoning.  Serum TIBC is increased in iron deficiency and decreased in chronic inflammatory disorders, malignancies and hemochromatosis.  Serum iron is increased in hemosiderosis, hemolytic anemias, thalassemia, sideroblastic anemias, hepatitis, acute hepatic necrosis, hemochromatosis, inappropriate iron therapy, and iron poisoning.  Serum iron is decreased in cases of insufficient dietary iron, chronic blood loss, inadequate absorption of iron, impaired release of iron stores (commonly observed in inflammation), infection, and chronic diseases.   

Sample Requirements

Specimen: Whole blood

Container(s): Gold SST, Red Tube, or Gold Microtainer

Preferred Vol: 1.0 mL

Minimum Vol: 0.5 mL


Note:  Avoid hemolysis.

Processing Instructions

Reject due to: Age of specimen, incorrect collection container, hemolysis.

Spin: Y

Aliquot: Y

Temp: 2-8oC

Storage location: Core 5 Refrigerator


Off-site collection:  Avoid hemolysis. No green top tubes; specimen must be serum. Spin blood promptly, and store serum at 2-8oC.



Specimen Type Temperature Time
Serum RT

3 D

Serum 2-8oC

 7 D

Serum -20o C or -70oC

  7 D



STAT Performed TAT
Y 24/7 1 H


Performing Laboratory

Seattle Children's Laboratory    


Department:  Core Chemistry

Phone Number: 206-987-2617



Reference Range


  Total Iron (uG/dL) Iron Binding Capacity (uG/dL) % Satuaration
0 - 1 W 125 - 240 60 - 175 ----------
1 W- 12 Y 20 - 123 250 - 400 ----------
12 Y- Adult 40 - 140 250 - 400 ----------
All Ages ---------- ---------- 15 - 50%



Method: Two Point Rate by Vitros 4600

Analytical Volume:  0.025 mL serum  + 0.03 mL dead space

CPT Codes