Significance of Blood transfusion

Significance of Blood transfusion

Healthcare Tech Outlook | Thursday, July 21, 2022

A blood transfusion is a standard medical procedure in which donated blood is provided to a patient through a narrow tube placed within a vein in his arm.

FREMONT, CA:  This potentially life-saving procedure can help replace blood lost due to surgery or injury. A blood transfusion can also help if an illness prevents the patient body from correctly making blood or some of the patient blood's components.

Blood transfusions normally occur without complications. When complications do occur, they're generally mild.

The necessity of Blood transfusion

People receive blood transfusions for various reasons — for example, surgery, injury, disease and bleeding disorders.

Blood has many components, comprising:

• Red cells carry oxygen and help eliminate waste products

• White cells help a patient's body fight infections

• Plasma is the liquid part of a patient's blood

• Platelets help patient's blood clot properly

A transfusion provides the parts of blood a patient need, with red blood cells being the most commonly transfused. The patient can also receive whole blood containing all the parts, but whole blood transfusions aren't common.

Researchers are working on developing artificial blood. But, so far, no good substitute for human blood is available.


Blood transfusions are usually considered safe, but there is some complications risk. Mild and rarely severe complications can occur during the transfusion or several days or more later.

More common reactions contain allergic reactions, which might cause hives, itching, and fever.

Bloodborne infections

Blood banks curtain donors and test donated blood to reduce the risk of transfusion-related infections, so infections such as HIV or hepatitis B or C are extremely rare.

Other serious reactions

Also rare, these include:

• Acute immune hemolytic reaction. The patient's immune system strikes the transfused red blood cells because the donor type is not a good match. The attacked cells release a substance into the patient's blood that harms the patient's kidneys.

• Delayed hemolytic reaction. Same as an acute immune hemolytic reaction, this reaction arises more slowly. It may take one to four weeks to detect a decrease in red blood cell levels.

• Graft-versus-host disease. In that state, transfused white blood cells attack the patient's bone marrow. Commonly fatal, it's more likely to affect people with severely weakened immune systems, such as those treated for leukemia or lymphoma.

How patient prepare

The patient's blood will be tested before a transfusion to determine whether the patient's blood type is A, B, AB or O and whether the patient's blood is Rh positive or Rh negative. The blood donated for the patient's transfusion must be compatible with the patient's blood type.

Tell the patient's health care provider if the patient had a reaction to a blood transfusion in the past.

Before the procedure

In some cases, patients can donate blood for patients self before elective surgery, but most transfusions involve blood donated by strangers. Again, an identification check will ensure the patient receives the appropriate blood.

Blood transfusion procedure

Into one of the patient's blood vessels, an intravenous (IV) line with a needle is inserted. The donated blood in a plastic bag enters the patient's bloodstream through the IV. patient be seated or lying down for the procedure, which usually takes one to four hours.

A nurse will monitor the patient throughout the procedure and take measures of the patient's blood pressure, temperature and heart rate. Tell the nurse immediately if the patient develops:

• Fever

• Shortness of breath

• Chills

• Strange itching

• Chest or back pain

• A sense of uneasiness

After the procedure

The needle and IV line will be detached. The patient might develop a bruise around the needle site, but this should go away in a few days.

Contact the patient's health care provider if the patient develops shortness of breath or chest or back pain in the days immediately following a blood transfusion.


The patient might need further blood testing to see how his body responds to the donor blood and to check the patient's blood counts.

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