Shocking Discovery About Heart Surgery Patients

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New research raises concerns about the risk of anemia and blood transfusions

MONDAY, March 2, 2015 – The high number of blood tests done before and after heart surgery can sometimes lead to excessive blood loss, possibly causing anemia and the need for a blood transfusion, new research suggests.

The study included almost 1,900 patients who had heart surgery at the Cleveland Clinic between January 2012 and June 2012. From the time they first met their heart surgeons until they left the hospital, the patients collectively had more than 221,000 blood tests. That works out to 116 tests per patient, according to the study.

The total median amount of blood gathered during an entire hospital stay was about 15 ounces (454 milliliters) per patient, the researchers found.