Letters

Serious hazards of transfusion (SHOT) initiative

BMJ 2000; 320 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.320.7241.1075 (Published 15 April 2000) Cite this as: BMJ 2000;320:1075

Conclusion was not supported by data presented

  1. Paul Nederlof, senior house officer in obstetrics and gynaecology (paulesteruk@paulesteruk.demon.co.uk)
  1. Gloucestershire Royal Hospital, Gloucester GL1 3NN
  2. Winchfield, Hook RG27 8SP
  3. On behalf of the SHOT Steering Group, SHOT Office, Manchester Blood Centre, Manchester M13 9LL

    EDITOR—Williamson et al report on the safety of transfusions in the first two annual reports of the serious hazards of transfusion (SHOT) initiative.1 Although they found 366 cases of serious complications after transfusion, they conclude that transfusions are extremely safe. This conclusion is not supported by their data because they do not mention the total number of transfusions. A rate of complications would be useful for junior doctors, who usually have to seek patients' consent to procedures. Do any such data exist?

    References

    1. 1.

    Autologous transfusion would avoid many of the problems of blood transfusion

    1. Michael J G Thomas, colonel (retired), Royal Army Medical Corps (MichaelJGThomas@compuserve.com)
    1. Gloucestershire Royal Hospital, Gloucester GL1 3NN
    2. Winchfield, Hook RG27 8SP
    3. On behalf of the SHOT Steering Group, SHOT Office, Manchester Blood Centre, Manchester M13 9LL

      EDITOR—Two articles in the BMJ last year highlight important issues in blood transfusion—namely, safety and autologous transfusion—and emphasise the need for education and standardisation of procedures.1 2 Provan raises the issues of availability and cost.1 The requirement for red cells is increasing annually by 2-3% against a static or even falling number of donations. One solution, suggested by both Provan1 and the NHS Executive, 3 is to increase the use of autologous transfusion. The safest and …

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