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Red blood cell transfusion in infants and children: Administration and complications

Jun Teruya, MD, DSc
Section Editor
Donald H Mahoney, Jr, MD
Deputy Editor
Carrie Armsby, MD, MPH


Transfusions of red blood cells are given to children for a wide range of indications, including anemia due to congenital or acquired disease, or blood loss from trauma, surgery, and/or frequent blood sampling. Red cell transfusion has significant risks, including volume overload, transmission of infectious agents, and various immunologic consequences including transfusion reactions. Many of these complications can be avoided with careful administration of red cell transfusions.

The administration and complications of red cell transfusion in infants and children will be reviewed here. Other aspects of red blood cell transfusion in infants and children are discussed in separate topic reviews:

(See "Red blood cell transfusion in infants and children: Indications".)

(See "Red blood cell transfusion in infants and children: Selection of blood products".)

(See "Red blood cell transfusions in the newborn".)

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Literature review current through: Sep 2017. | This topic last updated: May 05, 2017.
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