Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey
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New Brunswick, NJ 08903-2681
Bloodless surgery is done without the use of donor blood. Bloodless surgery may include:
Blood can be lost during surgery. It is often replaced with blood from a donor. Some may not want to receive donated blood. Reasons may include:
Bloodless surgery is an option for those who do not want or cannot have a donor blood transfusion.
Bloodless surgery may also lead to:
Your doctor will review problems that can occur with bloodless surgery. Complications from bloodless surgery may include a bad reaction to medicine or fluids that are needed.
Your doctor will:
If your blood will be needed, it will be collected before the surgery. You may be given treatments to help replace the blood. This may include fluids and the following:
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Your doctor may give you medicine to help your body make more blood. You may also asked to stop taking certain medicine, herbs, or supplements. Let your doctor know what you are taking.
Extra oxygen will be given before surgery. This will make sure your body keeps high levels of oxygen even if you lose some blood.
You may be placed in a hyperbaric oxygen chamber. This chamber helps to pump extra oxygen into your body.
The type of anesthesia will depend on your surgery.
What will happen will depend on the type of surgery you will be having.
To further minimize blood loss, the doctor will:
The blood that was collected from you may be reinfused. You may also be given special fluids. A hyperbaric oxygen chamber may be needed if oxygen levels are low.
Depends on the type of surgery you have.
Bloodless process does not cause pain.
How long you will stay in the hospital depends on the type of surgery.
You will be taken to your recovery room where the care team will monitor you. They will watch your oxygen levels.
It is important for you to monitor your recovery after you leave the hospital. Alert your doctor to any problems right away. If any of the following occur, call your doctor:
If you think you have an emergency, call for emergency medical services right away.
Allen J, Berrios L, Solimine M, Knott-Craig C. Bloodless Surgery in a Pediatric Jehovah’s Witness. J Extra Corpor Technol. 2013 Dec; 45(4): 251-253.
Bloodless Surgery Center. Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery, St. Luke’s-Roosevelt website. Available at: http://www.slrctsurgery.com/bloodless.html. Accessed December 28, 2019.
Center for Bloodless Medicine & Surgery at Pennsylvania Hospital. Penn Medicine website. Available at: https://www.pennmedicine.org/for-patients-and-visitors/find-a-program-or-service/bloodless-medicine. Accessed December 28, 2019.
Hyperbaric oxygen (HBO) therapy process and applications. Englewood Hospital Medical Center website. Available at: http://www.englewoodhospital.com/pdf/HBOProcessandApplications.pdf. Accessed December 28, 2019.
Mizuno J, Ozawa Y, Arita H, Hanaoka K. Anesthetic management of a Jehovah's Witness for pancreaticoduodenectomy. Masui. 2011;60(3):383-386.
Shander A, Javidroozi M, Perelman S, Puzio T, Lobel G. From bloodless surgery to patient blood management. Mt Sinai J Med. 2012;79(1):56.
Last reviewed June 2019 by Donald Buck, MD Last Updated: 9/16/2020