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A change in procedures (or maybe not for everyone)

When I have had my last 5 surgeries, each time, I went in to have my blood drawn, so that if I needed blood during the surgery, it would be my blood.

I was surprised when I was told that this practice is no longer done around here. I was expecting to get some of my blood reserved for my upcoming surgery.

The doctors have told me that there are several reasons why this is no longer being done

  • Too many patients went anemic after giving blood
    Most surgeries did not require any additional blood
    Having the extra blood and just disposing of it , became an expense
I am curious to see if this is something that is also being followed in your areas. Mine is from the Danbury,CT area and also following what most other CT hospitals are doing today.
Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com


  • Yes, when I had my surgery last month I had to go to the hospital two days before surgery. They did a type and cross match in case I needed a transfusion.
    Artificial disc at L5S1 for 10 years. Had 3 Level lumbar fusion and Laminectomy on Sept 27, 2013. It was an OLIF (Oblique Lumbar Interbody Fusion) with cages, BMP, rods & screws. Norco, Plaquenil
  • I am going today for the pre-op bloodwork so they can type and cross me. I am in northeastern PA and my doctor's office said they no longer allow patients to give their own blood for surgery because it takes too long for it to go through various stages of testing before it is allowed to be used.
    10/28/13 - ALIF, PSF, decompression at L4/L5 and L5/S1
  • jellyhalljjellyhall Posts: 4,373
    edited 10/15/2013 - 3:16 AM
    I have never been asked to give blood beforehand in case I need it.
    At the pre-surgery testing they do test the blood for which group it is.

    During my lumbar PLIF I did loose a lot of blood and they managed to save it and retransfuse it back into me.

  • Dr didn't have me give blood prior to surgery. I ended up needing a transfusion from the surgery. Wish it was my own blood. I'm not sure if it's still routine to donate your own blood.
    PLIF fusion L4-L5 and Decompression July 31
  • Thanks for sharing Ron. I requested to donate my blood prior to my Summer 2012 surgeries. Even in 1989 they had the machine "recycles" your own blood during surgery, but I still had to have blood then. I donated blood and so did my mother. I was upset that Red Cross Standards it isn't possible to donate more than 4 bags and that is down to the day, other wise it is "out of date". I know my surgery had to be rescheduled and I ended up loosing one of those bags. However, the doctor told me that if I requested (which I did) the anesthesiologist can remove a bag of blood as soon as you are put to sleep and replace it with fluids and then give it back if you need it during surgery. I went through that bag, plus my other three bags, plus many more bags of non-me blood...lol. Guess I'm not a good recycler :)

    Another thing of note, my surgeon said I could have my husband donate for me as well if we wished (same blood type),but the Red Cross said no, I was still pre menopausal so it wasn't allowed. Apparently it could cause my body to reject a future child. When I told my surgeon this he just laughed and said, "Well, that tells you how much I know and how often people donate their own blood these days...rarely!"
    33yo mom of two. My surgical history...preadolescence scoliosis, kyphosis, and a hot mess.... 5 spine surgeries and lots of items added I wasn't born with (titanium, peek, surgical steel). Guess cremation is out. TSA loves me.
  • This option was not presented to me, they just drew bood for type and cross match if needed. I hope it won't be.
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