Massive transfusion protocols in nontrauma patients: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Nora Sommer, Beat Schnüriger, Daniel Candinas, Tobias Haltmeier
Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery 2019, 86 (3): 493-504

BACKGROUND: Massive bleeding is a major cause of death both in trauma and nontrauma patients. In trauma patients, the implementation of massive transfusion protocols (MTP) led to improved outcomes. However, the majority of patients with massive bleeding are nontrauma patients.

OBJECTIVES: To assess if the implementation of MTP in nontrauma patients with massive bleeding leads to improved survival.

DATA SOURCES: National Library of Medicine's Medline database (PubMed).

STUDY ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA: Original research articles in English language investigating MTP in nontrauma patients.

PARTICIPANTS: Nontrauma patients with massive bleeding 18 years or older.

INTERVENTION: Transfusion according to MTP versus off-protocol.

STUDY APPRAISAL AND SYNTHESIS METHODS: Systematic literature review using PubMed. Outcomes assessed were mortality and transfused blood products. Studies that compared mortality of MTP and non-MTP groups were included in meta-analysis using Mantel-Haenszel random effect models.

RESULTS: A total of 252 abstracts were screened. Of these, 12 studies published 2007 to 2017 were found to be relevant to the topic, including 2,475 patients. All studies were retrospective and comprised different patient populations. Most frequent indications for massive transfusion were perioperative, obstetrical and gastrointestinal bleeding, as well as vascular emergencies. Four of the five studies that compared the number of transfused blood products in MTP and non-MTP groups revealed no significant difference. Meta-analysis revealed no significant effect of MTP on the 24-hour mortality (odds ratio 0.42; 95% confidence interval 0.01-16.62; p = 0.65) and a trend toward lower 1-month mortality (odds ratio 0.56; 95% confidence interval 0.30-1.07; p = 0.08).

LIMITATIONS: Heterogeneous patient populations and MTP in the studies included.

CONCLUSION: There is limited evidence that the implementation of MTP may be associated with decreased mortality in nontrauma patients. However, patient characteristics, as well as the indication and definition of MTP were highly heterogeneous in the available studies. Further prospective investigation into this topic is warranted.

LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: Systematic review and meta-analysis, level III.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Trending Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"