A Study of Frequency and Pattern of Adverse Transfusion Reactions at a Blood Bank in a Tertiary Care Hospital: Towards Hemovigilance

  • Suzaan Shajil Kasturba Medical College Mangalore- 01 MAHE, Manipal, Karnataka, India
  • Deepa Sowkur Anandarama Adiga Department of Pathology Kasturba Medical College, Mangalore- 01 MAHE, Manipal, Karnataka, India https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4220-8187
  • Debarshi Saha Department of Pathology Kasturba Medical College, Mangalore- 01 MAHE, Manipal, Karnataka, India
  • Shrijeet Chakraborty Department of Pathology Kasturba Medical College, Mangalore- 01 MAHE, Manipal, Karnataka, India
  • Ranjitha Rao Department of Pathology Kasturba Medical College, Mangalore- 01 MAHE, Manipal, Karnataka, India
Keywords: Adverse transfusion reaction, hemovigilance, febrile non hemolytic transfusion reaction


Background: Adequate and safe transfusion facility of blood and its components is necessary as blood transfusions are a part of life saving measures in medical and surgical emergencies. However, transfusion practice could result in non-fatal to fatal adverse transfusion reactions (ATR). Therefore, it is important to identify various adverse reactions so that steps can be taken to minimize such reactions and ensure safer transfusion being carried out. Methods: All ATRs reported to the blood bank from January 2013 to December 2016 were reviewed and analysed. The frequency of ATRs and its association with various component types were assessed. Result: During the study period, a total of 199106 units of blood were issued from the blood bank out of which there was an incidence of 77 (0.12%) transfusion reactions. Chills/rigors was the most common symptom (27.3%) of the symptomatic cases followed by pruritis (23.4%) Majority of the transfusion reaction were non haemolytic, 76 (98.7%) cases. One case was of haemolytic transfusion reaction. Among the non-haemolytic transfusion reactions, febrile non haemolytic transfusion reaction (FNHTR) constituted 28 (36.4%) and allergic reactions constituted 41(53.2%). Other transfusion reactions including hypotensive transfusion reaction (HTR), 1 (1.3%) case and transfusion associated dyspnoea (TAD), 6 (7.8%) cases were also seen. The frequency of ATRs was highest with packed red cells (PC) being 75.3% and least with platelet concentrate (PLTC) being 11.7%. Conclusion: The frequency of ATRs in our blood bank was found to be on a lower scale when compared to that of most of the similar studies. Allergic reactions and FNHTR were the most common ATRs seen, introduction of leukoreduction filters would help reduce FNHTRs.


Sharma DK, Datta S, Gupta A. Study of acute transfusion reactions in a teaching hospital of Sikkim: A hemovigilance initiative. Indian J Pharmacol. 2015; 47 (4): 370-74

Kumar P, Thapiyal R, Coshic P, Chatterjee K. Retrospective evaluation of adverse transfusion reactions following blood product transfusion from a tertiary care hospital: A preliminary step towards hemovigilance. Asian J Trans Sci. 2013; 7(2): 109-15.

Sahu S, Hemlata, Verma A. Adverse events related to blood transfusion. Indian J Anaesth. 2014; 58: 543-51.

Cho J, Choi SJ, Kim S, Alghamdi E, Kim HO. Frequency and Pattern of Noninfectious Adverse Transfusion Reactions at a Tertiary Care Hospital in Korea. 2016; 36:36-41.

Squires JE. Risks of transfusion. South Med J. 2011; 104(11):762-9.

Hendrickson JE and Hillyer CD. Noninfectious serious hazards of transfusion. AnesthAnalg 2009;108:759-69.

Gilliss BM, Looney MR, Gropper MA. Reducing Non-Infectious Risks of Blood Transfusion. Anaesthesiology. 2011: 115(3); 635-49.

Negi G, Gaur DS, Kaur R. Blood transfusion safety: A study of adverse reactions at the blood bank of a tertiary care centre. Adv Biomed Res. 2015; 4: 237.

Faber JC. Haemovigilance around the world. Vox Sang. 2002;83(Suppl 1):71–6.

Bhattacharya P, Marwaha N, Dhawan HK, Roy P, Sharma RR. Transfusion-related adverse events at the tertiary care center in North India: An institutional hemovigilance effort. Asian J Transfus Sci. 2011;5:164–70.

Sinha RTK, Rai P, Dey A. A Study of Transfusion Related Adverse Events at a Tertiary Care Center in Central India: A Retrospective Evaluationevaluation. J Med Sci Health 2016; 2: 6-12.

Prakash P, Basavaraj V, Kumar RB. Recipient hemovigilance study in a university teaching hospital of South India. An institutional report for the year 2014–2015. Glob J Transfus Med 2017; 2: 124-9

Pahuja S, Puri V, Mahajan G, Gupta P, Jain M. Reporting of Adverse Transfusion Reactions: A retrospective study form tertiary care hospital from New Delhi, India. Asian J Transfus Sci. 2017. 11(1): 6-12.

Saha S, Krishna D, Prasath R, Sachan D. Incidence and Analysis of 7 Years Adverse Transfusion Reaction: A Retrospective Analysis. Indian J Hematol Blood Transfus. 2020. 36(1): 149-155.

Mazzei CA, Popovsky MA, Kopko PM. Noninfectious complications of blood transfusion. In: Mark K, Brenda J, Christophjer D, Connie M, eds. Technical manual. 18th ed. Bethesda, MD: American Association of Blood Banks, 2014:665-96.

Vasudev R, Sawhney V, Dogra M, Raina TR. Transfusion -related adverse reactions: From institutional hemovigilance effort to National Hemovigilance program. Asian J Transfus Sci. 2016. 10(1); 31-36.

Sharma RR, Marwaha N. Leukoreduced blood components: advantages and strategies for its implementation in developing countries. Asian J Transfus Sci. 2010, 4(1); 3-8

Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Pre- vention Atlanta GA, USA. National Healthcare Safety Network Biovigilance Component Hemovigilance Module Surveillance Protocol c.2.1.3. http://www.cdc.gov/nhsn/PDFs/Biovigilance/BV-HV-protocol-current.pdf

Suddock JT, Crookston KP. Transfusion Reactions. [Updated 2020 Aug 10]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2020 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK482202/

Metcalf RA, Bakhtary S, Goodnough LT, Andrews J. Clinical Pattern in Hypotensive Transfusion Reactions. Anesth Analg. 2016 Aug;123(2):268-73.

Sahu A, Bajpai M. Determining the true incidence of acute transfusion reactions: Active surveillance at a specialized liver center. Hematol Transfus Cell Ther. 2019 Nov 30:S2531-1379(19)30167-1 doi: 10.1016/j.htct.2019.09.006

Original Article

Most read articles by the same author(s)