Korean J Blood Transfus.  2011 Dec;22(3):204-211.

Blood Transfusion in Brain Surgery: A Comparison of Elective versus Emergency Operations

  • 1Department of Neurosurgery, Jeju National University Hospital, Jeju, Korea.
  • 2Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, Jeju National University Hospital, Jeju, Korea.
  • 3Department of Laboratory Medicine, Jeju National University Hospital, Jeju, Korea. sunhg@jejunuh.co.kr


Blood transfusion is often performed to support successful brain surgery. In this study, we looked at two groups of surgery patients to analyze the transfusion requirements for patients undergoing brain surgery in our hospital. Group A patients received elective surgery, whereby blood products were prepared in advance, and Group B patients required emergency surgery which is often accompanied massive bleeding, and therefore adequate transfusion blood may not be available in advance.
During a one year period, patients who received brain surgery were classified as requiring either elective (Group A) or emergency (Group B) surgery. In each group, operation time and blood transfusion requirements were compared.
Of the 35 total patients included in this study, 14 cases were Group A and 21 cases were group B. Average operation time was 4 hours and 13 minutes (253 minutes), and 2 hours and 50 minutes (170 minutes), respectively for Groups A and B. Red Blood Cell (RBC) transfusion was conducted in more than 90% of all patients. Average volume of RBC transfusion per operation was 2.5 units (Group A) and 3.1 units (Group B). Fresh frozen plasma (FFP) was transfused in 21% of Group A patients and in 38% of Group B patients. Platelet Concentrate (PC) was transfused in 19% of Group B patients, only.
FFP and PC were more frequently transfused in patients who received emergency surgery than those who received elective surgery. Preparation of, not only RBC, but FFP and PC is required for emergency brain surgery. Therefore, efforts to retain adequate amounts of blood are needed to support emergency brain surgery.


Transfusion; Brain surgery; Elective operation; Emergency operation
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