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Transfusion. 1998 Jan;38(1):51-5.

Evaluation of changes in hemoglobin levels associated with ABO-incompatible plasma in apheresis platelets.

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Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of South Florida College of Medicine, Tampa, USA.



Hemolytic transfusion reaction is considered a rare complication of platelet transfusion. If minor ABO incompatibility exists (donor antibody directed against recipient's red cells [plasma-incompatible platelets]), however, the antibodies present in the plasma of platelets may cause acute hemolysis. A retrospective study was performed to identify possible hemolysis related to the transfusion of plasma-incompatible apheresis platelets.


Acute hemolysis due to low-titer anti-A present in group O apheresis platelets transfused to a group A patient is reported. Pretransfusion and posttransfusion hemoglobin levels were evaluated in 16 non-group O autologous bone marrow transplant patients receiving apheresis platelets. All patients received, within 24 hours, both ABO-identical and plasma-incompatible platelet transfusions. No red cells were transfused during the time between the collection of the pretransfusion and posttransfusion hemoglobin samples.


A total of 24 evaluable paired platelet transfusions in the 16 patients were compared. The mean change in hemoglobin following transfusion of the ABO-identical and plasma-incompatible platelets was -0.50 g per dL and -0.11 g per dL, respectively (p = 0.193).


There was no significant change in the hemoglobin concentration associated with the transfusion of plasma-incompatible apheresis platelets (minor ABO incompatibility) in our study group. The case reported here represents the only hemolytic transfusion reaction identified among 46,176 platelet transfusions performed at this hospital, despite approximately 21 percent of all platelet transfusions being plasma incompatible. The risk of such a reaction remains low.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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