Steroids Cut Transfusions In Heart Surgery

Fri, 10/19/2012 - 5:38am
Kristina Fiore

Patients given high doses of a steroid during heart surgery were less likely to need blood products, researchers said here.

In a post-hoc substudy of a randomized controlled trial, significantly more patients who were given dexamethasone 1 mg/kg during coronary artery bypass (CABG) surgery did not receive transfusions (61 percent versus 57.9 percent, P=0.03), according to Jan Dieleman, MD, of University Medical Center Utrecht in the Netherlands, and colleagues.

"We think this could be a good way to reduce blood transfusions," Dieleman said during a presentation at the American Society of Anesthesiologists meeting. "It seems to be cost-effective because dexamethasone costs nothing."

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