This meta-analysis reviewed 42 trials evaluating the efficacy and safety of preoperative acute normovolemic hemodilution (ANH). The authors reported that the risk of allogeneic transfusion was similar among patients receiving ANH and those receiving another blood conservation technique or usual care. Patients receiving ANH, however, had less total bleeding than patients receiving usual care and were transfused less (by 1 or 2 units). As for other meta-analyses, interpretation of the results is hampered by the relatively poor quality of the selection of the trials. At least two studies included in the meta-analysis were not designed to evaluate the efficacy of ANH.

– Philippe Van der Linden