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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Basic Tissue Orientation and Paraffin Embedding Technique. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Review of the Basic Steps for Routine Paraffin Embedding

1. Open a single cassetteExamine cassette lid and crevices for tissue fragments.
2. Identify specimen/Verify tissue typeExamine and identify the tissue type. Note the number of pieces, cut surfaces, ink, and special instructions. Check legibility of accession number and verify tissue type.
3. OrientSelect appropriate size base mold and position the specimen with correct orientation for tissue type. Fill mold with molten paraffin.
4. Complete blockReplace cassette bottom and fill with additional molten paraffin.
5. HardenAllow the block to completely cool and harden on the cold plate before attempting to remove it from the base mold.
6. ScrapeNeatly scrape excess paraffin from the edges of the block to ensure a secure fit into the block holder of the microtome.
7. InspectInspect for gross defects, such as air bubbles.