Efficacy of Oral Acetaminophen and Intravenous Chlorpheniramine Maleate versus Placebo to Prevent Red Cell Transfusion Reactions in Children and Adolescent with Thalassemia: A Prospective, Randomized, Double-Blind Controlled Trial
Background: Thalassemia is a common congenital hemolytic disorder. In severe cases, regular blood transfusion is essentially required. The role of premedications to prevent transfusion reactions is varied among institutions with no standard guideline. Objective: To prospectively compare the risk of transfusion reactions in thalassemia patients premedicated with acetaminophen and chlorpheniramine maleate (CPM) versus placebo prior to blood transfusion. Material and Method: A randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled transfusion reaction study of 147 eligible patients was analyzed. All administered red blood cell (RBC) products were leukoreduced blood products. Patients were monitored and followed for the development of transfusion reactions for 24 hours after RBC transfusion. Results: A total of 73 patients randomized to receive active drugs consisting of acetaminophen and CPM were compared to 74 patients receiving placebo. The overall incidences of febrile reaction and urticarial rash were 6.9% and 22% in the patients randomized to receive active drugs comparing with 9.5% and 35.2% in the patients receiving placebo with no significant differences between two groups. However, delayed development of urticarial rash at 4-24 hours after RBC transfusion was significantly higher in female and patients receiving placebo. Conclusion: Administration of premedications in thalassemia patients receiving RBC transfusion without a history of transfusion reactions does not decrease the overall risk of transfusion reactions. However, the use of CPM might be beneficial to prevent delayed urticarial rash in those patients especially in females (Thai Clinical Trial Registry (TCTR) study ID: 20140526001).