The Efficacy and Safety of Autologous Transfusion in Unilateral Total Knee Arthroplasty

Knee Surg Relat Res. 2015 Sep;27(3):168-72. doi: 10.5792/ksrr.2015.27.3.168. Epub 2015 Sep 1.


Purpose: Although allogeneic blood transfusion is the most common method of transfusion in total knee arthroplasty (TKA), there are reports showing significant decrease in the amount of allogeneic transfusion and incidence of side effects after combined use of autologous transfusion. The purpose of this study is to investigate the efficacy of using an autologous transfusion device in TKA.

Materials and methods: Patients who underwent TKA at our institution from January 2003 to January 2014 were divided into two groups: group A (n=127) who received allogeneic transfusion only in TKA and group B (n=118) who received autologous transfusion via an autologous transfusion device and allogeneic transfusion. In both groups, the patients were transfused when the hemoglobin level was below 9 g/dL. In group B, blood collected by the autologous transfusion device was transfused only once after surgery. The total blood loss volume, total transfusion volume, and the presence of side effects were assessed based on medical records.

Results: Group A received 294.6 mL more allogeneic transfusion than group B (p<0.001). There were no significant differences with regard to the development of side effects between groups.

Conclusions: Application of an autologous transfusion device during TKA can be effective in reducing the allogeneic transfusion volume. Moreover, allogeneic transfusion was not necessary after autologous transfusion in some patients.

Keywords: Arthroplasty; Autologous transfusion; Degenerative arthritis; Knee.