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Ann Maxillofac Surg. 2018 Jul-Dec;8(2):234-238. doi: 10.4103/ams.ams_51_18.

Surgical Specimen Handover from Operation Theater to Laboratory: A Survey.

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Department of Oral Pathology, Saveetha Dental College and Hospital, SIMATS, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India.



Essential communication between surgeons and pathologists is required when a specimen is transferred from operation theater to a laboratory. Any errors during transferring of specimen can lead to serious consequences such as wrong diagnosis, inappropriate treatment, reoperations, and physical and emotional disaster.


To evaluate the incidence of mishaps and misses during the transfer of specimen from operation theater to pathology department.


This cross-sectional study was conducted among the oral and maxillofacial surgeons and postgraduate students of the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. A self-administered questionnaire containing 15 questions pertaining to entry, collection, preservation, and transport of specimens to the laboratory was made. The questionnaire was validated and later distributed to the participants.


Our study showed that there are misses and mishaps during the entry, collection, preservation, and transport of specimen to the laboratory. 97.1% of participants reported that they require a checklist during the transfer of specimen.


Use of checklist can reduce mishaps and communication failures which is an initial link for reporting.


Artifacts; checklist; pathology; specimen transfer

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