Document Type



Emergency Medicine; Paediatrics and Child Health


Objective: To determine the indications and threshold of haemoglobin levels for packed red blood cell transfusion and its association with outcomes in a paediatric intensive care setting.
Methods: The retrospective study was conducted in the paediatric intensive care unit of the Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi, and comprised medical records of all inpatients with age between 1 month and 16 years who received packed red blood cell transfusions between January and December 2017. Data was retrieved from the hospital database and was analyzed using SPSS 22.
Results: Of the 147 subjects with a mean age of 67.89±65.8 months, 76(51.7%) were males. Mean paediatric risk of mortality score was 11.72±7.86. Major admitting diagnosis included sepsis and multiorgan dysfunction 50(34%), respiratory diseases 26(17.7%) and haematology/oncology diseases 22(15%). The indications for transfusion was low haemoglobin in 90(61.2%) patients, shock 29(19.7%) and hypoxia 28(19%). Acute transfusion reaction was observed in 1(0.7%) patient; 120(82%) required mechanical ventilation; and 94(64%) required inotropic support. Of the total, 88(59.9%) patients survived. Paediatric risk of mortality score, need for inotropic support and mechanical ventilation were associated with mortality (p<0.05).
Conclusions: Packed red blood cell transfusion, which is frequently prescribed in intensive care settings, was not found to be associated with favourable outcome.


JPMA. The Journal of the Pakistan Medical Association