New guidelines aim to reduce need for blood transfusions during heart surgery

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Four medical societies on June 30 shared new guidelines that aim to reduce blood loss during heart surgeries and improve patient outcomes.

The guidelines, published in The Annals of Thoracic Surgery, feature 23 new or updated recommendations on blood management during cardiothoracic surgeries. This is the first time these guidelines have been updated since 2011. 

The changes reflect advancements in cardiothoracic surgery in the last decade, including an increase in minimally invasive surgeries. The guidelines now include the most up-to-date best practices in blood product utilization and management. They also replace the term "blood conservation" with the broader term of "patient blood management."

Patient blood management programs are designed to help minimize blood loss, prevent anemia and reduce the need for blood transfusions.  

The Society of Thoracic Surgeons, Society of Cardiovascular Anesthesiologists, American Society of ExtraCorporeal Technology and Society for the Advancement of Patient Blood Management developed the new guidelines.

To learn more, click here.

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