Transfusion of Recovered Blood Is Cost-Efficient Strategy

Appears to be an effective alternative to allogeneic blood transfusion in trauma surgery
By Jeff Muise
HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, July 20 (HealthDay News) -- During emergency surgery, transfusing a trauma patient with his or her own blood offers an effective and less costly alternative to transfusion with allogeneic blood, according to a report in the July issue of the Archives of Surgery.

Carlos V.R. Brown, M.D., of the University Medical Center Brackenridge in Austin, Texas, and colleagues studied 47 trauma patients who underwent emergency surgery during 2006 to 2007 and had intraoperative cell salvage (CS), the term for the process in which shed blood is collected, processed, and transfused back into the patient. The researchers matched the CS group to a non-CS control group by sex, age, severity of injury, and type of operation.

The researchers found that the CS group received back an average of 819 mL of CS blood, almost half their average blood loss. Consequently, they received half the quantity of intraoperative and total allogeneic packed red blood cells compared to the controls (two versus four units intraoperative and four versus eight units total, respectively). The CS group also received less plasma than the control group (three versus five units). The cost of transfusion in the CS group was $1,616 per patient compared to $2,584 for controls.

"Intraoperative CS provides an effective and cost-efficient resuscitation strategy as an alternative to allogeneic blood transfusion in trauma patients undergoing emergency operative procedures," the authors write.

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