The impact of patient blood management on blood utilization and clinical outcomes in complex spine surgery

Mereze Visagie, Caroline X. Qin, Brian C. Cho, Kevin R. Merkel, Tymoteusz J. Kajstura, Raj M. Amin, Taylor E. Purvis, Khaled M. Kebaish, Steven M. Frank

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: Patient blood management (PBM) is especially applicable in major spine surgery, during which bleeding and transfusion are common. What remains unclear in this setting is the overall impact of bundled PBM measures on transfusion requirements and clinical outcomes. We compared these outcomes before and after implementing a PBM program. STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS: We conducted a retrospective review of 928 adult complex spine surgery patients performed by a single surgeon between January 2009 and June 2016. Although PBM measures were phased in over time, tranexamic acid (TXA) administration became standard protocol in July 2013, which defined our pre- and post-PBM periods. Transfusion rates for all blood components before and after PBM implementation were compared, as were morbid event rates and mortality. RESULTS: Baseline characteristics were similar before and after PBM. Before PBM, the mean number of units/patient decreased for red blood cells (RBCs; by 19.5%; p = 0.0057) and plasma (by 33%; p = 0.0008), but not for platelets (p = 0.15). After risk adjustment by multivariable analyses, the composite outcome of morbidity or mortality showed a nonsignificant trend toward improvement after PBM (odds ratio [OR], 0.64; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.39-1.01; p = 0.055), and the risk of thrombotic events was unchanged (OR, 1.12; 95% CI, 0.42-2.58; p = 0.80). CONCLUSION: In complex spine surgery, a multifaceted PBM program that includes TXA can be advantageous by reducing transfusion requirements without changing clinical outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3639-3645
Number of pages7
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Hematology


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