Emergency compatible, ABO-different blood group transfusion in the operating theater: A survey in Regional Japanese Society of Anesthesiologists- Certified Training Hospitals in 2006

Kazuo Irita, Eiichi Inada, Koichi Tsuzaki, Shoichi Inaba, Makoto Handa, Shuichi Kino, Kunihiro Mashiko, Takahiko Kubo, Kiyoshi Morita

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Background : In Japan, emergency blood transfusion practices including ABO-compatible, different blood group transfusion and uncross-matched, ABO-identical blood group transfusion are very limited possibly due to adherence to identical blood transfusion as well as fear of hemolytic reactions due to anti-A, anti-B, anti-RhD and unexpected antibodies. Purpose of the study is to examine the incidence of hemolytic reactions due to compatible, ABO-different blood group transfusion. Methods : We conducted a questionnaire survey regarding emergency compatible, different blood group transfusion in the operating theater in hospitals with more than 500 beds among those with an accredited Department of Anesthesiology regarded as regional hospitals. Of 384 institutions, 247 responded to the questionnaire. During the year 2006, compatible, ABO-different blood group transfusion was reported in 112 patients from 32 hospitals, among which 105 patients in 26 hospitals were available for further analysis. Results : Compatible red cell concentrate (RCC), fresh frozen plasma (FFP), and platelet concentrate (PC) were transfused in 23, 10, and 83 patients, respectively. Total amount of compatible RCC, FFP, and PC were 232, 162, and 1,679 units, respectively. In patients who were transfused with compatible RCC, two patients had unexpected antibodies. Overall mortality rate within the 30th post-operative day was 23%. In 80 patients, in whom only PCs were used as compatible blood products, blood loss was 86±85 ml·kg-1, 65% of patients underwent cardiovascular surgery, and mortality was 11%, implying that compatible PC was transfused mainly to avoid hemorrhagic diathesis in cardiovascular patients. In 64 patients with blood type of A, B, or AB, who underwent compatible PC transfusion, type O PC, incompatible blood products, were transfused in 9 patients. In 21 patients, in whom only RCCs were used as compatible blood products, blood loss was 206±224 ml·kg-1, and mortality was 57%. Therefore, compatible RCCs were transfused mainly to avoid life-threatening events. Uncross-matched, ABO-identical RCC transfusion was performed only in 29% of patients among these 21 patients. Transfusion-related hemolytic reactions were not reported in all 104 patients available for this analysis. Conclusions : Although the patient number was small, the finding that there were no hemolytic reactions might promote emergency blood transfusion practices in Japan. High mortality rate and a low rate of uncross-matched, ABO-identical RCC transfusion in patients with compatible RCC transfusion suggest that promoting emergency blood transfusion practices might reduce mortality rate due to massive hemorrhage in the operating theater.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1045-1054
Number of pages10
JournalJapanese Journal of Anesthesiology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Aug 1



  • ABO-compatible red blood cell transfusion
  • Critical hemorrhage
  • Emergency blood transfusion
  • Uncross-matched transfusion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine

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