Does Transfusion of Packed Red Blood Cells During Air Medical Transport Delay Transport Times?

Not according to new research published in the Prehospital Emergency Care Journal. 

The background to this research is a group of researchers who hypothesized that transfusion of packed red blood cells (PRBCs) during transport would not delay air medical transport times in patients with ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysm (RAAA). 

The reason that the main focus in this research is patients presented at a community hospital with a diagnosis of RAAA, is that these patients must be transported to tertiary care centers, where necessary resources are available. 

The group of researchers performed a retrospective analysis of a prospective registry, including prehospital data of patients with RAAA presenting to a single academic hospital in Western Pennsylvania between 2001 and 2019.

They included 271 patients with RAAA transported by the air ambulance system who underwent an operation at the receiving facility, 99 (37%) of whom received PRBCs in transit. Following adjusted analysis, the receipt of PRBCs during transport was not associated with increased transport times, after accounting for age, hypotension, endovascular aneurysm repair (EVAR), and PRBC transfusion at the pickup outside hospital (OSH).

The conclusion was that PRBC transfusion during air medical transport in patients with RAAA did not delay transport times.

To read the original article in full length click here. 


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Nancy Mikati, Amanda R. Phillips, Neal Corbelli, Francis X. Guyette & Nathan L. Liang (2021) The Effect of Blood Transfusion during Air Medical Transport on Transport Times in Patients with Ruptured Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm, Prehospital Emergency Care.