Management strategies for perioperative anaemia in the severely burn-injured Jehovah's Witness patients who decline a blood transfusion: A systematic review with illustrative case reports
Burns: journal of the International Society for Burn Injuries. 2022
BACKGROUND The management of severe burn-injured Jehovah's Witness patients who decline a blood transfusion poses unique challenges. The literature is scant for guiding perioperative anaemia management in these patients. We present a systematic review of this patient group, along with illustrative, consecutive case reports of our experience. METHODS A systematic review was performed on Embase, MEDLINE and PubMed databases on articles discussing the treatment of burn-injured Jehovah's Witness patients. Articles were excluded if discussing isolated inhalation injury, or if blood transfusions were permitted. RESULTS Nine articles including a total of 11 patients revealed consistent themes. A multimodal medical and surgical approach is suggested. Medical strategies are directed at reducing blood loss and optimising haematopoiesis and include rationalising blood collection, reversing coagulopathy, administering tranexamic acid and regular erythropoietin. Surgical strategies include staged aggressive debridement, tumescent adrenaline infiltration and limb tourniquets. We found that the argon beam coagulator was an effective haemostatic adjunct not previously described in literature. DISCUSSION Management of anaemia in severely burn-injured Jehovah's Witness patients is challenging. This systematic review presents a summary of strategies directed at minimising blood loss, and optimising haematopoiesis. Careful preoperative planning, meticulous surgical technique, and postoperative physiological support are caveats to success.
A double-blinded prospective evaluation of recombinant human erythropoietin in acutely burned patients
Journal of Trauma-Injury Infection & Critical Care. 1995;38((2):):233-6.
OBJECTIVE To evaluate the effects of recombinant human erythropoietin (r-HuEPO) in attempting to prevent anemia in acutely burned patients. DESIGN Prospective double-blind randomized study of 40 patients. METHODS Patients with burns from 25% to 65% total body surface were enrolled. r-HuEPO or a placebo was begun within 72 hours of admission. Cell blood count, reticulocyte counts, transfusion requirements, and blood loss were measured. Comparison was carried out by the unpaired t test. MAIN RESULTS There was no statistically significant difference in hemoglobin, hematocrit, reticulocyte count, ferritin, serum iron, total iron blinding capacity, or transfusion requirements. In patients with burns from 25% to 35%, the reticulocyte counts were statistically significantly higher. CONCLUSION In our work the administration of r-HuEPO in acutely burned patients did not prevent the development of postburn anemia or decrease transfusion requirements. Increased erythropoiesis in smaller burns (25% to 35%) was observed and may indicate a reason for further study.