Submitting a sample for serological allergy testing – UK practices

Information and guidance on how to submit a sample can be found below, along with details of our bespoke submission boxes and how to order them.

 

In addition to the guidance found on this page, our Practice Portal contains a large number of resources aimed at helping you optimise your sample submissions. Amongst these is the Complete Sampling Reference Guide, which provides information about withdrawal times, how to reduce the risk of non-viable samples, and the optimal time to sample. Click on the Practice Portal button below to explore further.

sub sample

HOW TO SUBMIT A SAMPLE

 

Our video gives step-by-step guidance through the process of submitting a sample and the key points to remember.

 

Submission boxes are provided free of charge and contain the following:

    • Sample submission form
    • Biohazard bag
    • Absorbent padding
    • Pre-paid, pre-addressed envelope

 

The submission box includes all items that are required to ensure your sample submission meets UN3373 packaging requirements. For more details, please click here.

To request additional submission boxes, please click below.

HOW TO SEND A SAMPLE

 

All samples are sent using Royal Mail’s ‘tracked’ service.  The following postal options are available:

Royal Mail parcel collection service

 

This FREE pre-paid online service allows you to book a collection

with Royal Mail and they will collect your sample directly from your practice.

 

For more information on how to book a collection or how to track your sample, please see our handy guides here:

 

Guidance on ‘How to book a collection’

Guidance on ‘How to track a sample’

Royal Mail postal drop-off

 

If you prefer to post your sample, you can do so in the following ways:

 

    • At a Royal Mail red pillar box (normal postal method). Simply place your sample submission envelope into your local postal box.
    • At a post office or postal depot
    • At a parcel post box (available 24/7). Please note the size limit for mail is 44cm x 35cm x 16cm.

 

To find your local drop-off points, visit: royalmail.com/services-near-you/

 

Please make a note of your tracking number before you post your item(s) in case you need to trace it at a later date.

Serum Sample Storage - Free

NOT READY TO TEST?

 

Don’t worry! Our serum storage facility is available free of charge and your samples will be safely stored until you are ready to test, allowing you time to complete the case work-up, and:

 

  • Sample when the animal is most symptomatic
  • Time the sampling so it avoids any interference with medication
  • Complete initial rule-out tests and/or diet trials
  • Wait for insurance approval
  • Allow the pet owner time to make a decision on allergy testing

 

Simply tick the box on your sample submission form to request the use of this free facility.

 

*Initial storage period is 3 months, after which you will be contacted to find out if you are ready to test.

CHECKLIST FOR SEROLOGICAL ALLERGY TESTING

 

  • A diagnosis of allergic disease has been made
  • The animal was symptomatic when the sample was taken (this is the optimum time to sample)
  • The animal is not on / has not recently been on any medication which could interfere with test results
  • The animal has not been on a restricted diet for at least 8 weeks (applicable to food test only)
  • The sample has been spun down to provide serum and to reduce the risk of haemolysis (if this is not possible double the volume of whole blood can be sent but this does increase the risk of repeat sampling being required)
  • All samples are clearly labelled and minimum sample requirements adhered to