Transfusion: Bacterial sepsis

Clinical - Hematologic

Transfusion transmitted bacterial infection (TTBI) is an important complication of blood product administration. A wide spectrum of organisms has been associated with transfusion transmitted bacterial infection, including skin, enteric, and environmental organisms. Gram-negative rods have been observed more frequently as red blood cell contaminants, while gram-positive organisms have been observed more frequently as platelet contaminants.

Clinical manifestations of transfusion transmitted bacterial infection include fever, rigors, tachycardia, and rise or fall in systolic blood pressure. Distinguishing between TTBI and other conditions on these grounds is unreliable, however, since these manifestations can also be associated with nonhemolytic transfusion reactions, acute hemolytic reactions, allergic reactions and other causes. In addition, TTBI can also occur in the absence of these findings.

The common preventive strategies include donor selection protocol, skin disinfection, sample diversion, leukodepletion, and detection of contamination by culture.


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    Transfusion;2001 Jul;41(7):862-72

    [PubMed: 11452153]

    BMJ. 2000 Apr 15;320(7241):1075

    [PubMed: 10390452]

    Transfusion;2001 Dec;41(12):1493-9

    [PubMed: 11778062]


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