Understand Blood Collection Tube Colors And Their Uses

Understand Blood Collection Tube Colors And Their Uses

Have you ever been to a hospital for a blood test? Have you ever thought about why blood test tubes are different color-coded? Well, the different color-coded tubes are used for specific types of blood tests. And important to know in diagnostics. Let's get into the importance and significance of vacutainer color code.

The blood test is important for getting accurate results of a patient's medical condition. From identifying diseases to treating them, the information collected from blood tests plays a central role in medicine science.

Importance of Blood Collection Tube Colors

Do you know that color-coded blood collection tubes are also called Vacutainer Tubes. The color isn't for aesthetics; it helps identify which tube is used for which type of test.

For an easy example - imagine yourself as a patient undergoing a series of blood tests. Wouldn't you be confident that the samples are in the correct hands and that the lab attendant  handling your samples knows exactly which test they have to do?

What are Vacutainer Blood Test Tubes?

Vacutainer Blood Collection Tubes, or vacuum tubes, are tiny and made of rubber plastic caps. They are designed for safe and easy blood collection and come with an inside vacuum for smooth flow.

After understanding the importance and significance of color-coded blood collection tubes. Let's understand what these tubes are and how they work. Vacutainer Blood Collection Tubes come with a closed system, unlike open systems where blood isn't covered and is in direct contact with the external environment. 

The closed systems are covered to protect the blood samples from germs and other infections. This makes it safe for medical workers and maintains hygiene.

Significance of Color-Coded Tubes

Now, let's talk about the color of the blood collection test tubes. You’ve probably seen tubes in red, blue, or maybe even off-white color. These colors are not randomly colored and have a meaning in the diagnostic section. Some tubes contain additives to protect the blood from clotting. 

Understanding these color differences may seem worth it, but it is important for your medical knowledge. It's like having a secret in medical care. So, the next time you encounter these colorful tubes, remember—they're not just for fun but for identification!

Lets Understand What Blood Tube Colors are for which Test?

Vacutainer Blood collection tubes come in different colors, each representing a unique type of tube with its purpose. Let's jump into the detailed color description.

  • Red Color Vacutainer Tubes:

The red tube doesn’t have any additives, which is why it's often called a "plain tube" or basic tube. Its blood samples are mainly used for in-blood grouping and crossmatching. Blood collected in red tubes clots naturally, which means it thickens and separates into serum and a clot.

  • Lavender Vacutainer Tube:

The blood samples collected in this tube are used for DNA testing. It contains a substance called EDTA (short for ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid). This stops blood from clotting by grabbing onto calcium ions. Buy Lavender Vacutainer Tube Online.

  • Dark Green Vacutainer Tube (Heparin Tube):

This is also known as the heparin tube, which is used to stop blood from clotting. The blood samples collected in this tube are used in electrolytes or glucose levels and blood gas testing.

  • Light Blue Blood Collection Tube (Citrate Tube):

Also known as citrate tube, contains sodium citrate and stops blood from clotting. Use in-blood clot tests to help check medical conditions.

  • Yellow Vacutainer Tube: 

The yellow tube contains Acid-citrate-dextrose A (an anticoagulant). Blood collected in tube is used for:

  • Tissue Typing
  • HIV Cultures
  • DNA Studies
  • Pink Vacutainer Tube:

The pink tube contains EDTA, similar to the lavender tube, and is used for:

  • Blood Typing
  • HIV Viral Load
  • Pearl White Vacutainer Tube:

The pearl white tube contains a separating gel and EDTA. Blood samples collected in this tube are used for:

  • PCR for Adenovirus
  • Toxoplasma
  • Gray Vacutainer Tube:

The gray tube contains sodium fluoride and potassium oxalate, which prevent blood from clotting and preserve glucose. The blood collected in this color Vacutainer is used for: Glucose Assay & Lactate Assay test.


Understanding the color of the Blood test tube, how to use vacutainer tubes, and their significance is the key to getting the right result. Using the right tube for the right result with a closing system is important for the patient’s healthcare safety. Hence, vacutainer blood test tubes are not just basic tubes; the patient needs to know about color-coded tubes before the test.

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