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Collagen is one of the most abundant proteins in the body and consists of multiple reticular fibers which may be stained using reticulin stain. Hence, the stain is very useful in cases of extensive fibrosis in tissues with tumors.

What is Reticulin Stain?

Reticular fibers present in tissues have a natural affinity for silver solutions when exposed to Potassium Permanganate[1], this is the principle for the reticulin stain. This stain is used extensively to study the presence of fibrous tissue in places where it shouldn’t be such as the liver and bone marrow[2]. Hence, making it an ideal stain for tumor affected organs.

 

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Why is Reticulin Stain suggested?

Reticulin Stain is suggested if you are experiencing:

  • Yellowish discoloration of the skin
  • Loss of appetite, and weight loss
  • General weakness and easy fatigability

How is Reticulin Stain performed?

Reticulin Stain testing is fairly simple as it requires:

  • A liver or bone marrow biopsy may be done to obtain an appropriate sample.
  • The sample is processed in a lab by cleaning the tissue, making slices of it and staining it, before observing it under a microscope.

What are the parameters measured in Reticulin Stain?

In Reticulin Stain is a very specific stain and is used to detect:

  • Presence/absence of fibrous tissue
  • Extent of fibrous tissue in the liver/bone marrow sample taken demonstrative of dmage done to an organ

Preparation before performing Reticulin Stain

  • Keep yourself hydrated and refrain from consuming alcohol
  • Avoid excessive exercise

Post-care after Reticulin Stain

The patient is advised to apply a bandage and refrain from sleeping on one side and adequate rest is suggested.

Sample types in Reticulin Stain

Reticulin Stain testing is done by testing:

  • Bone marrow
  • Liver Biopsy

Side effects/ risks of Reticulin Stain

As there is a bone marrow/liver sample taken for the reticulin stain, the site of sampling may have some pain and tenderness after the procedure. But there exist no side effects of Reticulin Stain procedure.

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