Viscosity - plasma

Last updated: Wednesday, 31, March, 2004

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Item Process

5 mL blood in EDTA.


Capillary viscometry. The resistance of plasma to flow deformation is tested and the result is expressed as a ratio in comparison to water.

Reference Interval



If a hyperviscosity state is suspected, FBC and ESR, serum protein (globulin) and serum protein EPG should identify clinically important disorders; plasma viscosity is only occasionally useful.

Occasionally of value in monitoring patients with plasma cell dyscrasias.


Occasionally assists in determining the clinical significance of elevated plasma proteins.

Increased plasma viscosity supports the clinical diagnosis of hyperviscosity syndrome.

Clinical hyperviscosity syndromes are usually only seen with plasma viscosity >5.


ICSH. J Clin Pathol 1988; 41: 1203-1222.