Contemporary Transfusion Science and Challenges

Heather M Passerini
AACN Advanced Critical Care 2019, 30 (2): 139-150
Health care professionals must understand the impact of blood product transfusions and transfusion therapy procedures to ensure high-quality patient care, positive outcomes, and wise use of resources in blood management programs. Understanding transfusions of blood and blood products is also important because of the number of treatments performed, which affects individual patients and health care system resources. This article reviews research findings to acquaint health care professionals with the most successful protocols for blood, blood product, and coagulation factor transfusions. Damage control resuscitation in bleeding trauma patients, protocols for patients without trauma who are undergoing surgical procedures that place them at risk for excessive bleeding, and protocols for patients with sepsis are addressed. Emerging research continues to help guide mass transfusion treatments (restrictive vs liberal, balanced, and goal-directed treatment). Although available study results provide some guidance, questions remain. Additional research by health care professionals is needed.

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