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Gift of life not taken by givers.

Gift of life not taken by givers

Although it is safer for patients awaiting elective surgery todonate their own blood for use after surgery, very few are taking advantage of this blood-banking procedure, called autologous donation. A national survey of nearly 5,000 surgery patients at 18 university hospitals during January and February 1986 found that only 5 percent of the 590 patients considered eligible for autotransfusion donated their own blood. In addition, a report on the survey, published in the Feb. 26 NEW ENGLAND JOURNAL OF MEDICINE, suggests that perhaps 10 percent of the hospitals' blood supply used during the test period could have been saved by using autotransfusion.

Recognizing that not all hospitals are yet equipped forprocessing a patient's own blood donated for his or her surgery, authors of the report still stress that the procedure should be encouraged by more physicians. In addition to saving blood for emergency cases, autologous donation can minimize the danger of acquiring diseases like AIDS and hepatitis through transfusion.
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Title Annotation:few people are banking own blood
Publication:Science News
Date:Mar 14, 1987
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