Transfusion Reaction Investigation

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It is a mandatory requirement for all Serious Adverse Reactions (SAR) and Serious Adverse Events (SAE) to be reported to the National Haemovigilance Office (NHO) as required by the EU directive 2002/98/EC. All transfusion reactions reported and investigated will be forwarded to the NHO.

On discovery of a suspected transfusion reaction:

  • Stop transfusion of blood product immediately where a suspected reaction has occurred and verify patient ID, ABO group of patient and donor unit immediately.
  • Medical advice should be sought immediately from the patient’s team and/or the haematology team.
  • Contact the Blood Transfusion laboratory during both routine and on-call hours.
  • Contact the Haemovigilance Officer during routine hours.

Laboratory Investigation

When a transfusion reaction is suspected it has to be reported using the ‘Report of a Suspected Adverse Transfusion Reaction/Event’ form WRH-BT-HF-006.

This outlines sample requirements and patient transfusion details required for the investigation to be carried out in the laboratory including – 

  • Implicated Unit with attached giving set    
  • Repeat Group & X-match sample  
  • Blood Cultures on the patient if temp rise ≥ 39oC or ≥ 2oC from base line or suspicion of bacterial contamination
  • Where indicated Blood culture on unit performed in laboratory
  • Full Blood Count
  • Renal Profile 
  • MSU  
  • Haemolytic screen