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Vox Sang. 1986;51(1):1-9.

Current issues in neonatal transfusions.


Two controversial issues of neonatal transfusion practices, erythrocyte 'booster' transfusions and granulocyte transfusions, are critically reviewed, and current recommendations for transfusion practices are made. Infants should receive erythrocyte transfusions to treat congestive heart failure caused primarily by anemia. It is customary to maintain the hematocrit at greater than 40% in neonates with severe respiratory disease, although the efficacy of this practice has not been firmly established. Erythrocyte transfusions seem to be indicated for infants with anemia plus recurrent apnea, poor weight gain or the syndrome of tachycardia, tachypnea, dyspnea and poor feeding for which no other cause can be found. Granulocyte transfusions are likely to benefit seriously ill neonates exhibiting all three of the following: strong evidence of bacterial sepsis, neutropenia (compared to age-related normal values) and a diminished marrow neutrophil storage pool. Granulocyte transfusions for septic infants expressing only one or two of these features should be considered to be experimental therapy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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