National Institutes of Health
- The primary NIH organization for research on Blood Transfusion and Donation is the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
Every year, millions of people in the United States receive life-saving blood transfusions. During a transfusion, you receive whole blood or parts of blood such as
Most blood transfusions go very smoothly. Some infectious agents, such as HIV, can survive in blood and infect the person receiving the blood transfusion. To keep blood safe, blood banks carefully screen donated blood. The risk of catching a virus from a blood transfusion is low.
Sometimes it is possible to have a transfusion of your own blood. During surgery, you may need a blood transfusion because of blood loss. If you are having a surgery that you're able to schedule months in advance, your doctor may ask whether you would like to use your own blood, instead of donated blood. If so, you will need to have blood drawn one or more times before the surgery. A blood bank will store your blood for your use.
NIH: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)