Transfusions in the Critically Ill Pediatric Patient

Jelena Roganovic


Pediatr Health. 2010;4(2):201-208. 

In This Article

Future Perspective

The burden of anemia and RBC transfusions in the PICU population are significant. The current guidelines for pediatric blood transfusions are mainly based on available information regarding transfusions in adults. Since many characteristics are specific to critically ill children and may affect the way in which they respond to anemia and transfusion, additional information is needed to better define guidelines for the prevention and treatment of anemia in this patient population. Pediatric transfusion medicine is evolving and incorporating new pharmacological agents into the armamentarium of anemia. For stable, critically ill children, there is increased evidence that a restrictive transfusion approach based on a predefined Hb value does not influence outcome. Continued research and large multicenter studies are needed to determine if, in high-risk patients, a symptomatic transfusion strategy is as effective, or possibly superior, to a Hb-based transfusion strategy.


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