Identification of surgical patients at high risk for requiring transfusion support is necessary to optimize perioperative management of bleeding complications.
The observational study described by Ravn et al. is aimed at identifying perioperative risk factors for allogeneic blood transfusion in patients undergoing different types of cardiac surgical procedures. The analysis, carried out in more than 800 patients, indicates that type of surgical procedure, previous cardiac surgery, emergency operations and preoperative reduced renal function are all good predictors of transfusions, not only for RBCs, as shown by previous studies, but also for plasma and platelets. Moreover, the study gives relevant information on the impact of a delay in withholding antithrombotic therapy on transfusion requirements.
– Giovanni Inghilleri