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View Full Version : Advantages/disadvantages of direct blood transfusion



RainyDayNinja
12-10-2010, 09:10 PM
Some of my characters are doctors, and they have a patient who's lost a lot of blood. He's going to get a transfusion from a crew mate, but I'm not sure if they should be hooked up directly (the blood going straight from one person to the other), or if the blood should be collected, then separately transfused into the patient. Are there any disadvantages to the direct transfusion, other than the logistics of having a donor readily available?

Drachen Jager
12-10-2010, 09:25 PM
If there's blood on hand they'd use that rather than blood from a donor they just found. The risk of transmitting HIV is too great as the blood can't be tested in your scenario.

I don't think they do direct transfusions like that any more except in the most dire of circumstances. Normally if you have the equipment on hand to perform a blood transfusion you'd also have the stored blood.

Maryn
12-10-2010, 09:47 PM
My understanding (I'm not a medical professional) is that it's near impossible to know how much blood has gone from the direct donor to the direct recipient. Concerns about blood-born disease are valid, especially in light of the many which can kill the recipient.

I remember reading, during the war in Vietnam, that the North Vietnamese took direct donation from new or inept soldiers for badly wounded seasoned veterans, and deliberately took it all when the veteran had a good chance of complete recovery. They apparently claimed it was an accident, because there was no way to measure in the field.

I have no idea if this was true or just propaganda to vilify the other guys, so take it with cautious disbelief.

Maryn, blood donor

Tsu Dho Nimh
12-15-2010, 12:48 AM
Some of my characters are doctors, and they have a patient who's lost a lot of blood. He's going to get a transfusion from a crew mate, but I'm not sure if they should be hooked up directly (the blood going straight from one person to the other), or if the blood should be collected, then separately transfused into the patient. Are there any disadvantages to the direct transfusion, other than the logistics of having a donor readily available?

Is this SF, Fantasy or what?

There are many reasons why it's not done in RL. It is "outside the bounds" of medical practice.

1 - Blood borne diseases.
2 - Non-ABO incompatibilities that can be lethal to the recipient that can only be detected in a lab.
3 - Risk of taking too much from donor and sending him into shock/death.

RainyDayNinja
12-15-2010, 06:56 PM
Yeah, this is an SF story, so the details are a little unusual, but the basic principle is the same. Thanks for the help!

veinglory
12-15-2010, 07:28 PM
If they don't know the donor and recipients blood type they would risk killing him that way.

But if you look up early transfusions you should be able to see how it was originally done directly person-to-person.