Transfusion Rates and the Utility of Type and Screen for Pelvic Organ Prolapse Surgery

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Limited data exist directly comparing the likelihood of blood transfusion by route of apical pelvic organ prolapse (POP) surgery. In addition, limited evidence is available regarding the risk of not ordering preoperative type and screen (T&S) in apical POP surgery. The objectives of the study are to (1) provide baseline data regarding the current need for preoperative T&S by comparing perioperative blood transfusion rates between 3 routes of apical POP surgery and (2) determine the rate of a positive preoperative antibody screen in women who underwent apical POP surgery.


This was a retrospective cohort study of women who underwent apical POP surgery by 3 different routes: abdominal (abdominal sacrocolpopexy), robotic (robotic sacrocolpopexy), or vaginal (uterosacral or sacrospinous ligament fixation).


Among 610 women who underwent apical POP surgeries between May 2005 and May 2016, 24 women (3.9%) received a perioperative blood transfusion. The rate of transfusion was higher in the abdominal group (11.1%) compared with robotic (0.5%, P < 0.001) and vaginal (0.5%, P < 0.001). In a logistic regression model, abdominal route of POP surgery remained significantly associated with transfusion (odds ratio, 20.7; 95% confidence interval, 2.7–156.6). Among the 572 women who had a preoperative T&S performed, 9 (1.5%) had a positive antibody screen.


Blood transfusion was significantly more common in abdominal compared with robotic and vaginal apical POP surgeries. The rate of a positive antibody screen was low, suggesting that type O blood is low risk if cross-matched blood is not available. Thus, it may be reasonable to not order a preoperative T&S prior to robotic or vaginal apical POP surgery.

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