Red Blood Cell Transfusion in Pediatric Patients With Severe Chronic Anemia: How Slow Is Necessary?†

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Abstract

Historic practice recommends slow transfusion for children with chronic anemia and hemoglobin less than 5.0 g/dl due to the theoretical risk of transfusion-associated circulatory overload (TACO). In our pediatric intensive care unit (PICU), we have been utilizing a more liberal transfusion practice in patients without underlying cardiopulmonary disease, and a faster transfusion rate appears safe in this population. Rate of transfusion must be based on multiple factors including convenience, timeliness of procedures and transport to an appropriate care facility, risk of alloimmunization and wastage of blood, stress for the family, and need for PICU monitoring. Pediatr Blood Cancer 2012; 58: 466–468. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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