UMEM Educational Pearls

Category: Critical Care

Title: Platelet Transfusions

Posted: 5/18/2009 by Mike Winters, MD (Updated: 10/28/2020)
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Platelet Transfusions and the Critically Ill

  • Current literature suggests that platelets are given too frequently and inappropriately
  • Recall that approximately 50% of platelet transfusions fail to increase counts
  • In addition, bacterial contamination of units is a special concern, with sepsis occurring 10x more frequently than with PRBCs
  • In general, platelet transfusions in nonbleeding patients can be withheld untl the count reaches 10 x 103/mm3
  • A transfusion trigger of 50 x 103/mm3 should be used for invasive procedures