Theme editorial| Volume 18, ISSUE 4, P585-588, December 1997

Single donor platelets: Can we afford to use them? Can we afford not to use them?

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      One of the strategies to reduce the risk of harming a patient by transfusion therapy is to limit the overall risk of transfusion-transmitted disease. Central to this approach is minimizing the number of allogeneic blood products with which a patient is transfused. The usual dose of platelets for an adult patient is either six to 10 random donor platelets vs. one unit of platelets, pheresis (so-called single donor apheresis platelets). Consequently, the transfusion services at the University of Southern California Health Sciences Campus (USC University Hospital, the Norris Cancer Hospital, and Los Angeles County+USC Medical Center) routinely use single donor apheresis platelets (SDPs) rather than random donor platelets (RDPs) in an effort to minimize allogeneic platelet transfusions, and thereby reduce risk of transfusion-transmitted infection. Although there are other compelling medical, technical, and medical-legal reasons to use SDPs instead of RDPs, the authors believe that a decrease in allogeneic donor exposures alone is sufficient reason to make SDPs the platelet component of choice at their insitutions.
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