Assessment of anaemia in elective pre-operative orthopaedic patients
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Assessment of anaemia in elective pre-operative orthopaedic patients

John Grant-Casey Project manager, NHS Blood and Transplant, Oxford
Karen Madgwick Transfusion practitioner, North Middlesex University Hospital, London

The transfusion of components made from human blood carries a small risk to the recipient. Pre-operative preparation, ensuring that the patient is not anaemic before surgery, is important to ensure that blood is not transfused unnecessarily. This article highlights that pre-operative anaemia is often not effectively managed in patients presenting for elective total hip replacement surgery, putting them at risk of unnecessary transfusion. A national comparative audit conducted by the authors suggests that there is a role for nurses who manage pre-operative assessment clinics to ensure that patients with anaemia are managed effectively before surgery. Nurses managing these clinics have an opportunity to decrease the need for peri-operative transfusion. The management of patients attending pre-operative assessment clinics should be reviewed to ensure that mechanisms are in place to allow the identification, investigation and treatment of anaemia.

Nursing Standard. 24, 50, 43-46. doi: 10.7748/ns2010.


Peer review

This article has been subject to double blind peer review