Women undergoing elective caesarean section (CS) routinely have a group and save ordered as part of their preoperative assessment, whereas women with expected vaginal birth do not. Our aim was therefore to determine the rate of blood transfusion at elective CS compared with vaginal birth in a large Australian maternity hospital. A retrospective cohort study was performed using routinely collected de-identified data of 35 477 women, over 4 years, who delivered at the Mater Mothers' Hospital, Brisbane, Australia. After excluding women with established risk factors for transfusion, the likelihood of blood transfusion following elective CS was significantly lower compared to vaginal birth (aOR 0.47 (0.29, 0.77)).
Keywords: birth; blood grouping and cross-matching; blood transfusion; caesarean section; health resources.
© 2014 The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists.