Blood Transfusion Practices in Patients Undergoing Total Joint Replacement: A Research Study

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Many studies show it is not necessary to transfuse according to a single hemoglobin level, but rather it is necessary to assess the combination of signs, symptoms, and laboratory measures.


The purpose of this study was to evaluate the use of red blood cell (RBC) transfusions in patients who underwent total hip or knee replacement.


The study comprised 2 retrospective medical record reviews: Phase 1 included data prior to the RBC transfusion order set and elimination of autologous blood. Phase 2 included postimplementation data.


There were a decreased number of patients receiving blood transfusions after implementing the RBC transfusion order set and a decreased hemoglobin trigger value. The strongest predictor of receiving a blood transfusion was autologous blood donation.


Use of the order set will decrease unnecessary transfusions hospital-wide.

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