Blood Transfusion Offered by Medical Oncology Specialists at Mercy

Medical Oncology at Mercy - Baltimore

Medical Oncology and Hematology at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore, a division of The Institute for Cancer Care at Mercy, offers patients an experienced team of medical oncologists and hematologists providing diagnosis and treatment of blood disorders that may require transfusions.

What is Blood Transfusion?

A blood transfusion is a medical procedure that restores blood lost due to an injury or surgery, an illness that causes bleeding, like anemia or thrombocytopenia, cancers such as leukemia, or other diseases. 

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Types of Blood Transfusion procedures

The blood is made up of many parts including red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets, plasma, and clotting factors. It can be transfused as whole blood (includes all parts) or as individual parts. The type of transfusion given depends on the condition. There are several types of transfusions including:

  • Red blood cell transfusions used for anemia and surgery.
  • Platelet transfusions used for cancer patients when the bone marrow does not make enough platelets.
  • Plasma transfusions used for patients whose blood does not clot correctly.
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How is a Blood Transfusion performed?

A transfusion is performed by inserting an intravenous line (IV) into one of your blood vessels. The transfusion typically lasts 1-4 hours, depending on how much blood is needed.

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Who should receive a Transfusion?

More than five million people of all ages receive some type of blood transfusion each year. People need blood transfusions for different reasons including:

  • Loss of blood during surgery
  • Injuries that cause loss of blood
  • Infections or liver disease that stop the body from making blood
  • Anemia from kidney disease or cancer
  • Bleeding disorders like hemophilia or thrombocytopenia