Large-scale use of red blood cell units containing alloantibodies

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Immunohematology

American National Red Cross

Subject: Medical Laboratory Technology

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ISSN: 0894-203X
eISSN: 1930-3955

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VOLUME 16 , ISSUE 3 (September 2000) > List of articles

Large-scale use of red blood cell units containing alloantibodies

Martha R. Combs / Donald H. Bennett / Marilyn J. Telen

Keywords : red blood cells (RBCs), passively acquired alloantibodies, cost-saving, antigen phenotyping

Citation Information : Immunohematology. Volume 16, Issue 3, Pages 120-123, DOI: https://doi.org/10.21307/immunohematology-2019-591

License : (Transfer of Copyright)

Published Online: 18-October-2020

ARTICLE

ABSTRACT

Many transfusion services are reluctant to accept red blood cell (RBC) units containing antibodies. We evaluated the impact of accepting routine shipments of our region’s inventory of alloantibody-positive RBC units over a 4-month period. All patients’ samples received up to 30 days after transfusion of such units were evaluated for the presence of passively acquired antibody, and labor and reagent costs were determined. During the study period, we received 259 alloantibody-containing RBC units, and 253 of these were transfused to 187 patients. Follow-up samples were received on 99 of these187 patients, and 10 of these patients had detectable passive antibody in posttransfusion antibody screening tests. Two patients had anti-C and -D and eight patients had anti-D. Due to our negotiation of a small discount for antibody-containing units and the use of 20 units based on labeled phenotype rather than antigen typing in our laboratory, we experienced a net savings of $3814 over the 4-month period. This savings was achieved despite some additional costs incurred, including costs of data entry and additional testing on patients’ samples. We concluded that large-scale use of RBC units from donors with alloantibodies is safe and likely to have a minimal impact on a busy transfusion service’s workload and costs. Furthermore, nationwide use of such units would help alleviate projected blood shortages.

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