A Randomized Trial of Tranexamic Acid to Reduce Blood Transfusion for Scoliosis Surgery

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Pediatric patients who undergo posterior spinal fusion surgery to correct scoliosis often require multiple blood transfusions. Tranexamic acid is a synthetic antifibrinolytic drug that reduces transfusion requirements in cardiac surgery and total knee arthroplasty. We evaluated the efficacy of prophylactic tranexamic acid to reduce perioperative blood transfusion requirements in a prospective, double-blinded, placebo control study. Forty patients, 9–18 yr of age, were randomized to either tranexamic acid (initial dose of 10 mg/kg and infusion of 1 mg · kg−1 · h−1) or placebo (isotonic saline). Perioperative management was standardized. A uniform transfusion threshold for noncell saved red blood cells was 7.0 g/dL. The total amount of blood transfused in the perioperative period was significantly reduced in the Tranexamic group (P = 0.045). No thrombotic complications were detected in either group. The administration of prophylactic tranexamic acid in patients with scoliosis undergoing posterior spinal fusion surgery has the potential to reduce perioperative blood transfusion requirements.

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