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Donor pregnancies and transfusion recipient mortality: A role for red blood cell storage?

Vox Sang. 2023 Nov 3. doi: 10.1111/vox.13551. Online ahead of print.


BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Donor characteristics have been implicated in transfusion-related adverse events. Uncertainty remains about whether sex, and specifically pregnancy history of the blood donor, could affect patient outcomes. Whether storage duration of the blood product could be important for patient outcomes has also been investigated, and a small detrimental effect of fresh products remains a possibility. Here, we hypothesize that fresh red blood cell products donated by ever-pregnant donors are associated with mortality in male patients.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: We used data from a cohort study of adult patients receiving a first transfusion between 2005 and 2015 in the Netherlands. The risk of death after receiving a transfusion from one of five exposure categories (female never-pregnant stored ≤10 days, female never-pregnant stored >10 days, female ever-pregnant stored ≤10 days, female ever-pregnant stored >10 days and male stored for ≤10 days), compared to receiving a unit donated by a male donor, which was stored for >10 days (reference), was calculated using a Cox proportional hazards model.

RESULTS: The study included 42,456 patients who contributed 88,538 person-years in total, of whom 13,948 died during the follow-up of the study (33%). Fresh units (stored for ≤10 days) from ever-pregnant donors were associated with mortality in male patients, but the association was not statistically significant (hazard ratio 1.39, 95% confidence interval 0.97-1.99). Sensitivity analyses did not corroborate this finding.

CONCLUSION: These findings do not consistently support the notion that the observed association between ever-pregnant donor units and mortality is mediated by blood product storage.

PMID:37920882 | DOI:10.1111/vox.13551

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