we are talking about the different kinds of blood transfusion reactions that you need to know about in nursing school. And if you like this video, write LOVE in the comments below and of course, subscribe to this channel so you don’t miss out on any other nursing school tips and resources that I have for you.
Now let’s do this! So blood transfusion reactions are, pretty scary, and they could range from mild to severe and life-threatening. A blood transfusion reaction happens when the patient’s body doesn’t like the blood we are giving it, or there’s an issue with the blood. So let’s walk through some of the different types of blood transfusion reactions. The first one we’ll talk about is an allergic blood transfusion reaction. It happens when the patient’s immune system reacts to little proteins in the donor blood that triggers the patient’s immune system.
It could range from mild itching to severe anaphylaxis. The second one is a febrile blood transfusion reaction. This one happens when the patient’s antibodies attack some of the donor’s white blood cells. This leads to a fever, hence the name of a”febrile transfusion reaction.” The next one we’ll talk about is a hemolytic blood transfusion reaction. And this one happens when the patient receives blood that isn’t the right blood type, meaning it’s incompatible.
When this happens, the patient’s immune system makes antibodies to attack the donor blood cells. This destroys the donor’s red blood cells. This is why it’s SUPER important for you to accurately ID your patient and do all of your checks before you do a blood transfusion.
You need to make sure you’re giving the right patient, the RIGHT blood. The next type of blood transfusion reaction we’ll talk about is a bacterial transfusion reaction, where the donor blood is contaminated with bacteria and then given to the patient, causing the patient to become septic.
This can be fatal. We have a whole video walking you through the pathophysiology of sepsis step-by-step, so be sure to check that one out after this video. Now let’s talk about Transfusion AssociatedCirculatory Overload (or a TACO for short).
This is just like it sounds, circulatory overload. The infusion is too much and/or too fast for the patient’s body to handle, the heart can’t keep up, and fluid backs up into the lungs. This is kind of similar to another blood transfusion reaction called a Transfusion Related Acute Lung Injury (or TRALI for short).
However, researchers aren’t sure what causes a TRALI. This happens when the patient develops rapid fluid buildup in the lungs and severe difficulty breathing, but it is NOT due to the amount of blood being given or anything wrong with the blood itself. And finally, let’s talk about the associated graft-versus-host disease (or ta-GVHD). This type of blood reaction is very rare, but almost always fatal. This happens when the DONOR’s white blood cells attack the RECIPIENT’s cells, and the recipient’s cells aren’t able to kill them.
It mostly happens in patients who are very immunocompromised, which is why their immune system isn’t able to fight off the donor blood immune cells. The donor cells mostly attack the liver, GItract, skin cells, and bone cells.
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