TRANSFUSION MEDICINE: GENERAL GUIDELINES

United Blood Services distributes a variety of blood components for transfusion. Each type of component requires certain pre-transfusion testing and selection of the appropriate component based on recipient and donor ABO/Rh determinations. Should there be any concerns about the suitability or quality of a blood component received from your blood center, please contact the center directly.

If you have other questions concerning issues relating to Transfusion Medicine please contact your blood center for resources that might be available in your area. On our Web site we have educational information and a listing of Web-based resources that may be helpful.

  • For information related to particular blood components, refer to the Blood Components and Derivatives section of this handbook.
  • For information related to post-transfusion recipient or post-donation donor issues, refer to the Regulatory section of this handbook.
  • For information relating to indications and benefits of transfusion, refer to the Circular of Information for the Use of Blood and Blood Components. This brochure is produced jointly by the American Associate of Blood Banks, America’s Blood Centers, and the American Red Cross. You can view the current version of the COI online. Copies are also available from your United Blood Services center.

Blood Filters

All blood products must be transfused through a sterile, pyrogen-free transfusion set that has a filter designed to retain particles potentially harmful to the recipient. There are a variety of filters available on the market. Your facility should have protocols in place for selecting filters, conditions for use and under what conditions any solution except 0.9% sodium chloride (USP) is used with the filter or added to the blood bag.

Compatible Blood Components for Transfusion

The following tables, defined by type of component, show the appropriate donor unit ABO Group and Rh Type that will be compatible with the patient/recipient:

Red Blood Cells: See D requirement
Component
Requested
Recipient’s
ABO Group
Component
ABO Group
Whole Blood O, A, B, AB ABO Identical
Red Blood Cells O O
A A or O
B B or O
AB AB, A, B, or O

 

Frozen Plasma: No D Requirement
Recipient’s ABO Group Component ABO Group
O O, A, B, OR AB
A A OR AB
B B OR AB
AB AB

 

Platelets: See D Requirement
Recipient’s ABO Group Component ABO Group
O O, A, B, OR AB
A A OR AB
B B OR AB
AB AB

*NOTE: If group compatible platelets are not available, any type can be given to a patient > 2 years of age.

Cryoprecipitate: No ABO/D specific criteria for this component

 

D Requirements:
Recipient D Type Red Cell Component D Type Platelet Component D Type
D Positive D Positive or Negative D Positive or Negative
D Negative D Negative D Negative Preferred