Theory and Application of Silver Stains in the Histology Laboratory

Recorded On: 06/24/2020

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The silver stains used and performed in the histology lab are complex and diverse.  They provide an everyday unique challenge to histologic preparation and staining results. Generally, five various chemical categories are used for this application.  These include argentaffin, argyrophilic, impregnation, oxidation-reduction, and metallic-metallic reactions. They stain and demonstrate a wide array of tissue components and constituents including bacteria, fibers, basement membranes, carbohydrates, glycoproteins, and axons. Examples and chemical mechanisms of each technique will be examined and discussed. Other nuances of these procedures will be discussed from an end user perspective. Stain automation has prevented a full comprehension of key reactions that occur during these silver procedures.  

Debra Siena, HT(ASCP),QIHC

Debra Siena, HT(ASCP) QIHC, is Technical Support Manager with StatLab in McKinney, TX.  She is an active member of the NSH, frequent speaker at the Annual NSH S/C, and state meetings, and is committed to helping others achieve success in the laboratory. 


Theory and Application of Silver Stains in the Histology Laboratory
Open to view video.
Open to view video. Objectives: review types of silver stains; understand their advantages; understand their challenges.
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1.00 CEUs credit  |  Certificate available