Preoperative anemia in patients undergoing elective orthopedic surgery is associated with increased likelihood of blood transfusion as well as increased perioperative morbidity and mortality. A standardized approach for the detection, evaluation, and management of anaemia in this setting has been identified as an unmet medical need.

A multidisciplinary panel of physicians with expertise in orthopedic surgery, orthopedic anesthesia, hematology and epidemiology was convened by NATA with the aim of developing practice guidelines for the detection, evaluation and management of preoperative anaemia in elective orthopedic surgery.

The working group, chaired by Alice Maniatis (Greece) and Peter Earnshaw (UK), was made up of Lawrence Tim Goodnough (USA), Göran Benoni (Sweden), Photis Beris (Switzerland), Elvira Bisbe (Spain), Dean A. Fergusson (Canada), Hans Gombotz (Austria), Oliver Habler (Germany, Terri G. Monk (USA), Yves Ozier (France), Robert Slappendel (The Netherlands) and Marek Szpalski (Belgium).

NATA guidelines were published in the January 2011 issue of the British Journal of Anaesthesia. The article can be downloaded free of charge from the BJA website.

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