Whole blood

Whole blood sample tubes
Photo: UKM Münster

Ideal matrix for most chemicals because it is in contact with the whole organism and in equilibrium with the organs and tissues in those chemicals are being accumulated.

Whole blood consists of several compartments; essential and accidental substances are differently distributed in single compartments. This is true for hydrophilic and lipophilic substance classes. Depending on distribution of a substance between blood plasma and cell-compartment of the blood must be decided whether analyses in whole blood or blood plasma make sense. Therefore, collecting whole blood is suitable to reflect the total exposure to pollutants.

For more information about the specimen, the sampling and the processing of samples see the Guideline for Sampling and Sample Processing Whole Blood and Blood Plasma (2015) - IBMT.

For investigations in the years 2011 to 2014 you will find the regulations in Richtlinie zur Probenahme und Probenbearbeitung Vollblut und Blutplasma (2011) - UKM.

Recommended analysis examples

Sampling area


Sampling period

1981 - 2021

Extended information