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Transfusion. 2010 Aug;50(8):1732-42. doi: 10.1111/j.1537-2995.2010.02652.x. Epub 2010 Apr 30.

Effective reduction of transfusion-related acute lung injury risk with male-predominant plasma strategy in the American Red Cross (2006-2008).

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  • 1American Red Cross, National Headquarters, Biomedical Services, Medical Office, Rockville, Maryland, USA.



Plasma components from female donors were responsible for most cases of transfusion-related acute lung injury (TRALI) reported to the American Red Cross (ARC) between 2003 and 2005. Consequently, we began preferentially distributing plasma from male donors for transfusion in 2006 and evaluated the effect on reported TRALI cases in the ensuing 2 years.


Suspected TRALI cases reported to the ARC Hemovigilance Program in calendar years (CY) 2006, 2007, and 2008 are described. Any case involving a fatality was also independently reviewed by three ARC physicians and classified as probable TRALI or not TRALI.


The percentage of plasma collected from male donors and distributed for transfusion increased each year from 55% in CY2006 to 79% in CY2007 and 95% in CY2008. Independent medical review of the 77 reported TRALI cases involving a fatality identified 38 cases as probable TRALI. Plasma was the only component transfused in six of these cases in 2006, five in 2007, and zero in 2008. Overall, the analysis of reported fatalities and nonfatal cases demonstrates that TRALI involving only plasma transfusion was significantly reduced in 2008 compared to 2006 (32 vs. 7 cases; odds ratio [OR] = 0.21; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.08-0.45), to a level that was no longer different from the rate of TRALI observed for RBC transfusion (4.0 vs. 2.3 per 10(6) distributed components; OR = 1.78; 95% CI = 0.67-4.36).


Reported TRALI cases from plasma transfusion decreased in 2008 compared to the prior 2 years simultaneously with the conversion to male-predominant plasma for transfusion.

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