If you desire medical or surgical care without the use of donor blood, the Blood Conservation Program at Lakewood Regional Medical Center offers:
Special blood conservation methods to minimize your blood loss
A variety of procedures possible without blood transfusions due to advanced technology
Lakewood’s Blood Conservation Program caters to patients who desire transfusion-free services during medical and surgical procedures, including general surgery, orthopedics, obstetrics, gynecology and most other procedures.
You may choose transfusion-free services, or “bloodless surgery” because of strong religious convictions that prevent you from receiving blood transfusion or for a personal preference against receiving donor blood due to the risk of blood-borne
disease or transfusion reactions.
The multidisciplinary team of skilled physicians and surgeons at Lakewood is committed to blood conservation, using state-of-the-art blood conservation devices, pharmaceuticals and meticulous surgical techniques to minimize your blood loss during medical
or surgical intervention.
Bloodless Medicine and Surgery
The Blood Conservation Program at Lakewood Regional Medical Center provides surgical and medical care without the use of donor blood for those who desire it.
The program coordinator and surgeons can help develop an individualized plan tailored to your specific medical needs. Lakewood physicians that are committed to transfusion-free services represent a full range of medical and surgical disciplines.
For more information, please call (855) 580-3668.
Bloodless Medicine Benefits
At Lakewood Regional Medical Center, we’ve found that choosing bloodless medicine for surgery and medical procedures can bring several benefits, including:
Decreased risk of infection
Decreased risk of blood-borne diseases and viruses
Avoid allergic reactions and complications
Shorter hospital stays
The conventional wisdom of always transfusing blood during medical procedures is being challenged. We know now that bloodless care can prevent or lessen the anemia associated with surgery and other medical procedures. And while blood donated in the United
States is tested for several infectious diseases, some infectious agents are not screened.
At Lakewood, the choice of bloodless care is up to you. The program coordinator for our Blood Conservation Program can answer any of your questions about the benefits and of bloodless medicine, as well as its disadvantages.
Bloodless Program Management
The Blood Conservation Program manager works diligently to ensure your choice for bloodless medicine is understood and respected, working with your surgeon and other healthcare staff at Lakewood Regional Medical Center to facilitate this.
Our program manager is familiar with the various reasons, such as religious ones, for choosing bloodless care and is dedicated to communicating your needs throughout the consultation, admission and procedure process. You can expect:
Continued communication of your needs with surgeon and staff
Assistance with physician referral
Assistance with outpatient services, family accommodations and scheduling
Continuing resource of information on bloodless care
Our current program manager, Ron Williams, is available to answer your questions and to guide you and your family through the process of a bloodless procedure.
Bloodless medicine, also known as transfusion-free, is an advanced program of medical care in which we perform medical and surgical procedures without the use of banked (or stored) allogenic blood or primary blood components. Blood loss often occurs during surgery. A bloodless program endeavors to minimize blood loss by using blood conservation methods.
People choose to avoid blood transfusions for a variety of personal reasons. For some, it might be a matter of religious belief or personal conviction. For others, they might seek to avoid the risk of blood-borne infections and prevent immune system suppression.
Our Lakewood staff prepares you with medication and iron supplements for a few weeks prior to surgery to stimulate the production of more red blood cells. During surgery, our team conserves your blood by using meticulous technique and state-of-the-art surgical instruments to stop or prevent excessive bleeding. In many cases, blood lost during a surgical procedure can be salvaged and recycled.
In the U.S., donor blood is tested for several infectious diseases. However, there are other infectious agents that are not screened. Furthermore, introducing donor blood into your system can suppress your body’s immune system and make infection more likely.
Make sure you are taken to a facility with a bloodless care program like Lakewood. If you can speak for yourself, tell the emergency room personnel, admitting personnel, nurses and other staff about your choice for transfusion-free care. At Lakewood, our program coordinator will be alerted to your admission and visit you to make sure your wishes are documented.
Tell your friends, relatives, co-workers or anyone who might be in a position to speak on your behalf. Put your wishes in writing in the form of a living will or advance directive. Give a copy of this to several people to maintain. You may also carry a card stating your wishes in an obvious location. Attach it to your driver’s license, for example. The Lakewood staff can help you create an advance directive if you do not have one.
Yes. With the consent of a legal guardian, we will. Lakewood physicians have agreed to explore and exhaust all non-blood alternatives in the treatment of children. However, California State Law does require physicians to administer blood transfusions to minors if the transfusion is judged necessary to prevent immediate death or loss of function of a major organ.
We deliver transfusion-free services at an individualized level tailored to your specific medical needs. Our program coordinator is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to assist you and answer your questions. Lakewood physicians that are committed to transfusion-free services represent a full range of medical and surgical disciplines.
With the advent of universal testing of all donor blood, the medical community embraced the idea that when in doubt, it was better to transfuse than not to transfuse. Now, with a clearer understanding of anemia and its effects on the body, this conventional wisdom is being challenged. In fact, we know that with the use of pharmaceutical agents, intravenous fluids, along with improved diagnostic procedures and surgical techniques, bloodless care can prevent or lessen the anemia associated with surgery and other medical procedures.
We can help you prepare your body to compensate for blood loss during surgery with a number of approved pharmaceutical agents that lessen or prevent anemia. These agents include erythropoieten and iron, which are typically used prior to surgery to stimulate the bone marrow’s production of red blood cells. We can also use these agents after emergency surgery to rebuild your red blood count.
Advanced laboratory technology allows us to use fewer samples of blood for diagnostic testing. Sometimes only one sample of blood can be used for multiple tests, rather than the numerous samples drawn typically. Additionally, microsampling, or smaller amounts of blood, has become just as effective in testing as larger, conventionally sized samples. By using fewer and smaller blood samples, we can significantly reduce the blood loss associated with essential diagnostic tests.
We minimize blood loss during surgery with operative techniques such as avoiding small cuts, immediate clamping or cauterizing of bleeding vessels. The choice of instrumentation also plays an important role. Electrocautery, surgical lasers and argon beam coagulators cause less blood loss than traditional cutting scalpels and help in the clotting of blood during surgery. Additionally, minimally invasive surgery, such as the use of endoscopic or laparoscopic technique, usually result in much less blood loss than traditional open forms of surgery.
We use advanced techniques to salvage and recycle blood lost during certain types of surgeries. For example, blood that spills in the chest or abdominal cavity can be collected, filtered and re-infused in a continuous process. We use this technique in trauma as well as in the operating suite to ensure we salvage as much blood as possible.
Lakewood staff also conserves blood with hemodilution. We draw blood, followed by the immediate infusion of intravenous fluids to replace the missing blood. Blood lost during the surgery will be diluted by the intravenous fluid and therefore fewer red cells are lost. At the same time, the blood that was drawn is slowly returned via a continuous circuit that is linked to your circulatory system, replacing the lost red blood cells.
At Lakewood, we are committed to providing the highest quality care to our transfusion-free patients. You will be clearly identified to all relevant hospital staff to ensure your bloodless treatment plan is maintained at all times. You and your family will be involved in every step of the diagnostic and treatment decision-making process. Our program coordinator is available to you and your family before, during and after hospitalization to assist you and answer your questions.
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