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Arch Pathol Lab Med. 2017 Dec;141(12):1705-1711. doi: 10.5858/arpa.2016-0461-OA. Epub 2017 Aug 29.

Survey on Transfusion-Transmitted Cytomegalovirus and Cytomegalovirus Disease Mitigation.



- Cytomegalovirus (CMV) can be transmitted by cellular blood products, leading to severe disease in immunosuppressed patients such as neonates and transplant recipients. To mitigate transfusion-transmitted CMV (TT-CMV), "CMV-safe" blood products (leukoreduced and/or CMV-seronegative) are transfused. Attempts to develop practice guidelines for TT-CMV mitigation have been limited by paucity of high-quality clinical trials.


- To assess current TT-CMV mitigation strategies across medical institutions for specific at-risk populations.


- Supplemental questions regarding TT-CMV and CMV disease mitigation were added to a College of American Pathologists Transfusion Medicine (Comprehensive) Participant Survey in 2015, addressing whether a given institution provided CMV-safe products for 6 at-risk patient populations.


- Ninety percent (2712 of 3032) of institutions reported providing universally leukoreduced blood products. Among institutions without universal leukoreduction, 92% (295 of 320) provided leukoreduced products on the basis of clinical criteria. Eighty-three percent (2481 of 3004) of respondents reported having availability of CMV-seronegative products; however, wide variation in policies was reported governing CMV-seronegative product use. Among all respondents, less than 5% reported using CMV prophylaxis and monitoring in high-risk patient groups. Transplant centers reported higher rates of CMV prophylaxis (25% [97 of 394] solid organ) and monitoring (15% [59 of 394] solid organ) for CMV-negative transplant recipients.


- Universal leukoreduction is the primary strategy for mitigating TT-CMV. While most institutions have both CMV-seronegative and leukoreduced blood products available, consensus is lacking on which patients should receive these products. High-quality studies are needed to determine if CMV-seronegative and leukoreduced blood products are needed in high-risk patient populations.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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