Is There a Role for Red Blood Cell Transfusion in the Critically Ill Patient?
The value of red blood cell (RBC) transfusion in clinical practice was unchallenged through most of this century . However, in the early 1980s transfusion practice began to come under systematic scrutiny [2–4]. Initially, the primary concerns related to the risks of transfusion-related infections, particularly human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and hepatitis. However, the issues are now much more complex. The examination and debate over RBC transfusion risks over the last two decades has led to a more critical examination of transfusion benefits. Further complicating these issues has been the growing shortage of RBCs available for transfusion. This chapter will focus on the evidence regarding the role of RBC transfusion in the treatment of the critically ill patient today.
KeywordsBlood Transfusion Transfusion Practice Transfusion Strategy Transfusion Risk Liberal Transfusion Strategy
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