Background Cost-effectiveness analyses of blood safety interventions require estimates of the life expectancy after blood product transfusion. These are best derived from survival after blood transfusion, per age group and blood component type.Study design and methods In the PROTON (PROfiles of TransfusiON recipients) study transfusion recipient data was collected from a hospital sample covering 28% of the total blood use between 1996 and 2006 in the Netherlands. The dataset includes date of transfusion, blood component type transfused and recipient identification details. PROTON data were individually matched to mortality data of the Netherlands. Survival after first transfusion and after any transfusion was calculated, per blood component type and age group. PROTON mortality rates were compared to mortality rates in the general population. The results were used to estimate survival beyond the study period and to estimate life expectancy after transfusion.Results Of all 2 405 012 blood product transfusions in the PROTON dataset, 92% was matched to the national Dutch Municipal Population Register, which registers all deaths. After 1 year, survival after any transfusion was 65.4%, 70.4% and 53.9% for RBC, FFP and PLT respectively. After 5 years, this was 46.6%, 58.8% and 39.3% for RBC, FFP and PLT, respectively. Ten years after transfusion, mortality rates of recipients are still elevated in comparison with the general population.Conclusion Mortality rates of transfusion recipients are higher than those of the general population, but the increase diminishes over time. The mortality rates found for the Netherlands are lower than those found in comparable studies for other countries.

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Vox Sanguinis
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Borkent-Raven, B.A, Janssen, M.P, van der Poel, C.L, Schaasberg, W.P, Bonsel, G.J, & van Hout, B.A. (2011). Survival after transfusion in the Netherlands. Vox Sanguinis, 100(2), 196–203. doi:10.1111/j.1423-0410.2010.01378.x