Korean J Blood Transfus.  2022 Apr;33(1):24-31. 10.17945/kjbt.2022.33.1.2 4.

Incidence of Adverse Reaction to Transfusion in Pediatric Patients

  • 1Department of Laboratory Medicine, Chungbuk National University Hospital, Cheongju, Korea
  • 2Department of Laboratory Medicine, Chungbuk National Univeristy College of Medicine, Cheongju, Korea


Transfusions in pediatrics need to be performed carefully because of various variables, such as the blood volume and immature immune system. As a result, adverse transfusion reactions may appear differently from adults. This study examined the frequency and types of adverse transfusion reactions in pediatric patients.
From January 2018 to December 2021, this study was conducted on 58 children who requested red blood cells, platelets, and plasma blood components from Chungbuk National University Hospital. The frequency and types of adverse transfusion reactions were analyzed retrospectively by reviewing blood transfusion-related medical records and compared with previous studies.
Approximately 0.9% of total blood components were transfused into pediatric patients; 1,179 units of blood components were transfused. The number of transfusions for red blood cells, platelets, and plasma was 383, 712, and 84 units, respectively. Among 58 patients, 23 adverse transfusion reactions were observed in 15 (25.9%) patients. Of these, 18 were febrile nonhemolytic transfusion reactions, and five were allergic transfusion reactions. Febrile nonhemolytic transfusion reactions occurred in 66.7% of cases with red blood cells, and allergic transfusion reactions occurred with platelets in 60% of cases.
This paper reported the incidence and types of adverse transfusion reactions in pediatric patients. This is expected to be more frequent in pediatric patients than adults, but most of them were relieved by supportive treatment because the symptoms were mild. As the awareness of hemovigilance is still low, it is essential to recognize and deal with adverse transfusion reactions through continuous education.


Adverse reaction; Allergic transfusion reaction; Febrile nonhemolytic transfusion reaction; Pediatrics
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