Blood Product Transfusion in Liver Transplantation and its Impact on Short-term Survival

L Kasraian, S Nikeghbalian, M H Karimi


Background: Estimation of the amount of blood products required during liver transplantation can help provision of adequate blood supply, minimize transfusion-associated complications, and plan ahead for preventive measures in high risk patients.

Objective: To investigate independent predictors of peri-operative blood product transfusion and its impact on short-term survival of liver transplant recipients.

Methods: In a cross-sectional study, old charts of patients who underwent liver transplantation between March 2003 and March 2013 at Namazi Hospital, Shiraz, Iran, were reviewed. The mean amount of blood product utilized during surgery and hospital stay and the related factors, including demographic characteristics, pre-transplant laboratory data, pre-transplant clinical data, operation data, and post-transplantation data were recorded.

Results: We studied 1198 patients who underwent liver transplantation. The mean±SD amounts of red cells, fresh frozen plasma, and platelet transfusion during surgery and hospital stay were 2.67±3.5, 2.06±3.8, and 1.6±3.8 units, respectively. The mortality rate was significantly higher in patients who received higher amounts of blood products (p<0.001). The mean amount of blood products’ utilized during operation was significantly (p<0.001) decreased from 2003 to 2013.The mean amount of packed cell usage during operation and hospital stay was significantly (p<0.001) correlated with age, technique of surgery, serum albumin level, cirrhosis, blood urea nitrogen, length of operation, and prothrombin time.

Conclusion: Pre-operative factors may predict blood transfusion requirements in patients undergoing liver transplantation. Therefore, evaluation of patients before operation should be considered to provide adequate blood supply and minimize transfusion-associated complications. Understanding pre-operative factors associated with rate of transfusion may help us to best utilize the limited available blood resources.


Blood loss; Liver transplantation; Blood product transfusion; Survival rate

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 pISSN: 2008-6482
 eISSN: 2008-6490


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