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Actas Urológicas Españolas

Print version ISSN 0210-4806


FREGONESI, A. et al. Strategies for transfusion-free radical retropubic prostatectomy in Jehovah's witnesses. Actas Urol Esp [online]. 2010, vol.34, n.5, pp.440-443. ISSN 0210-4806.

Objectives: While radical retropubic prostatectomy carries significant potential for blood loss requiring transfusion, Jehovah’s Witnesses do not permit the use of allogeneic blood products. This study presents strategies for transfusion-free radical retropubic prostatec- tomy for prostate cancer treatment in Jehovah’s Witnesses patients. Methods: From March 1998 to May 2009, 25 Jehovah’s Witnesses patients diagnosed with prostate cancer underwent radical prostatectomy and bilateral iliac and obturatory lymphadenectomy. Preoperative hemoglobin boost utilizing erythropoietin aiming hemo- globin over 14 g/dL, normovolemic hemodilution and availability of cell salvage machine were provided for blood loss management. Results: The mean age was 62 (43 to 70) years and the mean hospitalization time was 3.5 (3 to 7) days. Mean intra-operative bleeding was 430 (±120)ml and the mean pre- and post-operative hemoglobin (measured before discharge) was 15.1 (±0.8) and 11.7 (±2.3)g/dL, respectively. There was no need for cell salvage machine or transfusion. The lowest hemoglobin was 5.7g/dL due to post-operative bladder neck bleeding, which responded to twenty days of office based erythropoietin subcutaneously on alternate days reaching 12g/dL hemoglobin. There was no complication related to non-transfusion. Conclusions: The proposed techniques were essential for maximum reduction of the need for transfusions without increasing complications. Further studies are needed to introduce these methods in all cases of radical retropubic prostatectomy regarding the benefits in lowering costs and risks related to transfusion.

Keywords : Radical prostatectomy; Transfusion-free; Jehovah's witnesses; Prostate cancer.

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