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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Red Blood Cell (RBC) Morphology. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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It is important to differentiate in vitro changes, which are secondary to preparing the slide, from in vivo morphology, which is the result of the pathophysiological condition of the patient. Examining erythrocytes in the critical viewing area is extremely important in making this distinction. The determination of the clinical significance of the morphology reported is the responsibility of the physician, who must correlate the blood smear findings with other laboratory parameters and with the clinical picture.