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Adult cardiac surgery blood/blood product utilization in the post aprotinin era: an 855 patient, community hospital, retrospective experience


Background and objectives

Prior to 2008, when it was withdrawn, aprotinin use in cardiac surgery patients was associated with reduced bleeding and blood utilization, but studies linked its administration to increased patient mortality. We investigated (a) blood/blood product utilization between 2008 and 2013 at our community hospital heart center according to the type of surgery performed following the withdrawal of aprotinin and (b) clinical variables associated with increased patient blood utilization.

Materials and methods

Seven hundred nine patients were retrospectively investigated for blood/blood product utilization. Variables examined were patient age, body surface area (BSA), gender, preoperative creatinine level, hematocrit level, total cell saved blood (CSB) administered, cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) time, type of surgical procedure performed, and preoperative clopidogrel usage. Variables (categorical and continuous) were placed into a forward stepwise regression model for the continuous outcome, packed red blood cell (PRBC) utilization. The stepwise function utilized a P value threshold of 0.25 for entering the model and 0.1 for leaving the model.


For coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery, use of PRBC was 29.26 % (0.75/1.44), of platelets was 14.18 % (0.24/0.72), of fresh frozen plasma (FFP) was 7.34 % (0.19/0.78), and of cryoprecipitate was 10.63 % (0.23/0.97) among our patient sample. [Data expressed as percent patient utilization, mean/S.D. in units transfused]. Increased age, smaller BSA, higher preoperative creatinine level, lower preoperative hematocrit level, longer CPB time, and increased CSB administration was associated with increased PRBC administration (P < 0.0001).


At our community heart surgery center, with a multidisciplinary blood conservation program in place, expected increase in blood/blood product utilization following aprotinin withdrawal was not experienced.

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Corresponding author

Correspondence to Ajeet Dutt Sharma.

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Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Research involving human participants and or animals

The study was approved by St. Vincent Hospital ethics committee and has been performed in accordance with the ethical standards as laid down in the 1964 Declaration of Helsinki and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent

For this retrospective study, informed consent was not required.

Ethics approval

All procedures performed in our study involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

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Sharma, A.D., Al-Achi, A., Behrend, D. et al. Adult cardiac surgery blood/blood product utilization in the post aprotinin era: an 855 patient, community hospital, retrospective experience. Indian J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 32, 87–96 (2016).

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  • Bleeding
  • Coagulation
  • Transfusion