View Full Version : Blood Loss Question

02-09-2010, 09:31 PM
Hi Everyone...is a lot of blood loss normal? I know Anne had a significant amount, but what is "normal" if there is such a thing...or how much loss did you have. Also, do we donate our own blood first? When does that happen? I'm sure I will find this out at my pre op 2/24 but am wondering now!


02-09-2010, 10:42 PM
Laura, my doctor didn't ask me to donate, he uses blood bank blood for which I was grateful. Also cell saver, which is recycling the blood that you lose. I used several units on the day of surgery then a couple of days later, a couple more. I think it was 6 units all up but my memory is a little hazy. I will ask my partner when he comes home.

02-09-2010, 10:53 PM
I was advised to donate 3 units of my own blood....however I ended up needing to have 6 once all was said and done.....fun stuff!! :D

02-09-2010, 11:54 PM
Hanson had me donate a pint. I got it back because my levels were *slightly* low 2 days after surgery - and I pitched a fit because if I didn't use it, it would be tossed (so it goes with autologous donations).

Otherwise, I wouldn't have received blood post-op.

I'm a big believer in blood bank supplies ... and made my mind up early on, if I needed more than 1, it was coming from there. I had tooooo much other pre-op crap to stress over to add in more trying to bank my own blood.

And I don't care what I've read about donation stimulating hematopoiesis, it still always seems like the patient gets back what the doctor requested ... whether it's 1 pint or 6.


02-10-2010, 06:28 AM
My surgeon asked for 3 units if possible. I was only able to donate 2 due to my haemoglobin falling below the benchmark, therefore, i had 1 unit crossmatched. I lost 1 litre during surgery and had 300ml returned to me via Cellsaver. As i didn't require my blood urgently, they gave it back to me over the next 24 hours after surgery to perk me up. I'm guessing the crossmatched blood was returned to the blood bank.

02-10-2010, 08:24 AM
I lost a lot of blood during surgery - 2.5 litres. The normal blood volume for an adult I think is 0.75 x your weight. So I lost nearly half.

I did not have to donate any blood as my surgeon collects any blood lost by the patient. The blood is then washed and spun and put back into your body. Unfortunately with this method there is substantial destruction of red blood cells so anemia sets in. But I bounced back quick.

Before surgery my surgeon told me his patients usually only lose around 400-500mls of blood.

02-10-2010, 12:30 PM
my doctor wanted 6 units to be donated. I donated 2 myself and family donated, for a total of 8 units. I had an anterior and posterior surgery and needed 6 units all together.

loves to skate
02-10-2010, 01:44 PM
I received 2 units from the cell saver and 2 units of bank blood the day after surgery. I also received another 2 units of bank blood the day after surgery number 2. So, 6 in all and I didn't donate my own blood because I came down with a nasty cold the day before I was scheduled to donate.

02-10-2010, 03:24 PM
Wow! This is so interesting! Everybody seems different! I wonder why some drs. request you to donate and some don't. And why some lose so much blood and some don't. It's such a mystery. Is there any danger to not using your own blood and going through a bloodbank? I have never donated blood, and at this point don't even know my blood type. I would prefer to go Pam's route and not donate before...like you said, Pam...enough stuff to worry about!!!

02-10-2010, 06:08 PM
Hi Laura,
Banked blood is quite safe. The bloodbanks have screening protocols to follow. Prior to donating, you have a blood test to make sure that everything is ok and that your healthy enough to donate. In my case, although i had been on iron tablets since the first donation, i was still unable to donate the third unit as my levels dropped below their benchmark. If youwant to go the bloodbank way, then i think you should. If you are in pain and have a little anxiety about the surgery, you definitely don't need this type of thing to worry about. Have a great day!

02-10-2010, 08:40 PM

I decided not to donate any of my own blood.I have no veins and it takes forever to find a vein

In the beginning , right after scheduling surgery, I was too upset and anxious to donate .

Then someone suggested some other threads about blood to read and on one of them, it stated that with small veins, I should not donate blood. But leave my veins for surgery


02-10-2010, 09:20 PM
We still don't know what caused my excessive blood loss, although Dr. Lonner said there was profuse bleeding from the first incision. Nothing showed up on any preliminary testing, have had surgery years ago--no problem. They did extensive testing afterwards and the hemotologist met with us and said nothing so far was out of the normal range. They did send some stuff out for more obscure testing. I did donate one unit prior to surgery--my time frame was so short, that's all I could donate. Over the last few years, I had been taking plenty of NSAID's but stopped those within a month of surgery. We still don't have a definitive answer but the bottom line is, Dr. Lonner was unable to finish the last rod and anchor. There's an outside chance we may get fusion there but it's more likely he'd have to go back in from the front and complete it. Makes me borderline suicidal just to think about having to do that so am blocking it out for now. We're going to see where we are at 3 months with x ray and Cat scan. I thought I was pretty well prepared for this but there was no way I could have handled another surgery during that same week--mentally or physically. Am just praying so hard that we don't have to operate again. This was more traumatic than I expected--it is wonderful to be home.

02-10-2010, 10:08 PM
I was told to donate my own blood a month before my operation. They wanted me to go in every other week to donate. I ended up finding out because I weigh less than 110lbs that I was unable to donate so my mom went in and donated for me at the hospital I was having my surgery. The first surgery I was given 6 units of blood while I was in the ICU. The second surgery I lost a lot of blood but they used the cell saver and was able to recycle my own blood and give it back.
I think if you have a long surgery for the most part you end up losing blood and they give you a blood transfusion. My operations were both around 10hrs long so it was pretty intense in there.

Hope I was able to give you some kinda help o_0


02-10-2010, 10:54 PM
"My operations were both around 10hrs long so it was pretty intense in there."

And look at you now, you amazing person!