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Characteristics of Recipients of Red Blood Cell Concentrates in a German Federal State

  • Background: Annual transfusion rates in many European countries range between 25 and 35 red blood cell concentrates (RBCs)/1,000 population.It is unclear why transfusion rates in Germany are considerably higher (approx. 50–55 RBCs/1,000 population). Methods: We assessed the characteristics of transfusion recipients at all hospitals of the German federal state Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania during a 10-year longitudinal study. Results: Although 75% of patients received ≤4 RBCs/patient in 2015 (1 RBC: 11.3%; 2 RBCs: 42.6%; 3 RBCs: 6.3%; 4 RBCs: 15.0%), the mean transfusion index was 4.6 RBCs due to a minority of patients with a high transfusion demand. Two thirds of all RBCs were transfused to only 25% of RBC recipients. Consistently, male patients received a higher number of RBCs (2005: 54.2%; 2015: 56.8%) and had a higher mean transfusion index than female patients (mean 5.1 ± 7.2; median 2; inter-quartile range [IQR] 2–4 vs. mean 4.0 ± 5.8; median 2; IQR 2–4). The absolute transfusion demand decreased between 2005 and 2015 by 13.5% due to a composite of active reduction (clinical practice change) and population decline in the 65- to 75-year age group (lower birth rate cohort 1940–1950); however, with major differences between hospitals (range from –61.0 to +41.4%). Conclusion: Transfusion demand in a population could largely be driven by patients with high transfusion demand. Different treatment practices in this group of patients probably add to the major differences in transfusion demand per 1,000 individuals between countries. The available data cannot prove this hypothesis. Implementation of a diagnosis-related group-based monitoring system is urgently needed to allow informative monitoring on the population level and meaningful comparisons between transfusion practices.

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Author: Linda Schönborn, Kerstin Weitmann, Andreas Greinacher, Wolfgang Hoffmann
Pubmed Id:https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33173455
Parent Title (English):Transfusion Medicine and Hemotherapy
Publisher:S. Karger AG
Place of publication:Basel, Switzerland
Document Type:Article
Date of first Publication:2020/09/22
Release Date:2021/10/21
Tag:Blood supply; Demographic change; Red blood cell concentrates
GND Keyword:-
First Page:370
Last Page:378
Faculties:Universitätsmedizin / Institut für Hygiene und Umweltmedizin
Universitätsmedizin / Institut für Immunologie u. Transfusionsmedizin - Abteilung Immunologie
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - Namensnennung-Nicht kommerziell