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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


eISSN: 1643-3750

Intraoperative Blood Transfusion and Postoperative Morbidity Following Liver Resection

Qiang Lu, Jing Zhang, Wei-Man Gao, Yi Lv, Xu-Feng Zhang, Xue-Min Liu

Department of Hepatobiliary Surgery, The First Affiliated Hospital of Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi’an, Shaanxi, China (mainland)

Med Sci Monit 2018; 24:8469-8480

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.910978

Available online:

Published: 2018-11-24

BACKGROUND: Blood transfusion is common during liver resection (LR). The objective of the present study was to investigate the effects of intraoperative transfusion of different blood components on post-LR morbidity.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: We included 610 patients undergoing LR and grouped them according to intraoperative transfusion of different blood components: packed red blood cells only (PRBC, n=81); frozen fresh plasma, platelets, and cryoprecipitate (FPC, n=38); transfusion only with PRBC + FPC transfusion (n=244); and no blood transfusion (n=247). Propensity score matching (PSM) analysis was used to mitigate selection bias in comparisons.
RESULTS: The overall blood transfusion rate was 59.5%. In comparison with the no blood transfusion group, PRBC-only and PRBC + FPC transfusion were more common in patients with lower preoperative hemoglobin, worse liver function, larger tumor size, and undergoing a major LR, and thus were associated with increased postoperative morbidity. In contrast, FPC-only transfusion was more frequent in patients with a liver function of Child-Pugh B and lower preoperative albumin vs. the no blood transfusion group. In the propensity model, transfusion of PRBC (PRBC-only and PRBC+FPC) and FPC (FPC-only and FPC+PRBC) were significantly associated with increased postoperative complications vs. the no blood transfusion group (OR and 95% CI, 1.9 [1.2–2.7], p=0.002; OR and 95% CI, 1.6 [1.0–2.4], p=0.029). In contrast, intraoperative PRBC-only or FPC-only transfusion showed no significant adverse effects on postoperative morbidity.
CONCLUSIONS: Allogenic transfusion of PRBC and FPC blood components was associated with increased postoperative morbidity after liver surgery. Different blood components should be used only when absolutely necessary.

Keywords: Blood Transfusion, general surgery, Liver Neoplasms, Morbidity