Emergency Transfusion of Patients with Unknown Blood Type with Blood Group O Rhesus D Positive Blood

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Dr. med. Kathleen Selleng, OÄ, QB Hämotherapie

Universitätsmedizin Greifswald
Institut für Immunologie und Transfusionsmedizin,
Abt. Transfusionsmedizin
Greifswald Deutschland

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Red blood cell concentrates (RBCs) of blood group O RhD negative are frequently used as universal blood for emergency transfusions in patients with unknown blood type. This leads to an over-proportional use of these red blood cell concentrates and regular shortages of O RhD negative RBCs.

Due to these shortages, patients with known RhD negative blood type sometimes have to be transfused with RhD positive RBCs.

The present study shows that the overall risk to induce an anti-D by transfusing all emergency patients with unknown blood type with O RhD positive RBCs is in the range of 3 to 6%, while this risk is much higher (20-30%) in RhD negative patients which have to be transfused with RhD positive RBCs due to RhD negative RBC shortages.

MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?

Response: In medical systems, which experience shortages of O RhD negative RBCs, patients with unknown blood type who require emergency transfusions may be transfused with O RhD positive RBCs. This likely reduces shortages of O RhD negative RBCs and thus the overall risk to induce anti-D alloimmunization in the population.

MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: A prospective cohort study comparing two groups of major hospitals using O Rh negative RBCs for patients with unknown blood type and the others using O RhD positive RBCs could further substantiate our findings.

MedicalResearch.com: Thank you for your contribution to the MedicalResearch.com community.


Emergency transfusion of patients with unknown blood type with blood group O Rhesus D positive red blood cell concentrates: a prospective, single-centre, observational study
Selleng, Kathleen et al.
The Lancet Haematology , Volume 0 , Issue 0 ,
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2352-3026(17)30051-0

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Last Updated on April 9, 2017 by Marie Benz MD FAAD