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Global Blood Resources' On-Line Calculator Reveals Wasted Blood Costs by Blood Salvage Machines During Heart Surgery to be in the Billions
Date:5/6/2008

States. Over 50% of patients having heart surgery receive at least one transfusion from a volunteer blood donor.

The paper "On-Line Autotransfusion Waste Calculator" published in the Journal of The American Society of Extra-Corporeal Technology describes how GBR's calculator uses a spreadsheet to estimate the cost of wastage seen with the traditional machines that salvage only red blood cells. These salvage machines wash away all other blood elements such as platelets, required for blood to clot, and plasma, the fluid portion of blood that contains clotting factors and important proteins necessary for patient stability. With insufficient platelets and clotting factors, patients bleed and require transfusion with red cells and other expensive, scarce blood components. In contrast, the Hemobag(R) uses whole blood ultrafiltration, a process that conserves whole blood containing red blood cells and all of the other constituents that are washed away by "cell washer" blood salvaging machines.

"The old standard of washing away viable platelets and plasma proteins must be re-evaluated, as wasting these blood constituents is not sound blood management in cardiac and other major surgeries," said Keith Samolyk, a perfusionist and founder of Global Blood Resources. "Conserving all elements of the patient's own blood during surgery is critical," reports William Shely, M.D., a cardiac surgeon from Salem Hospital in Salem, OR. "Our patients get fewer blood products by reinfusing the patient's own concentrated whole blood with the Hemobag(R), and they are much more stable especially in the early postoperative period when traditionally most donor blood products are given."

Physicians can use the calculator to estimate the cost of wastage using known averages specific to their equipment and blood product costs, which vary greatly across the USA. Even if the exact values of some parameters to be entered in the calculator are unknown, it can easily simulate the fin
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SOURCE Global Blood Resources LLC
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