Clinical Pearl: Guidelines for Irradiate Blood Product Use

At VA morning report, Dr. Jonathon Dowell provided an excellent review on the rational use of irradiated blood products. It is important to recognize that irradiation inactivates remaining white cells following blood product filtration. This tool aims to reduce the risk of transfusion associated graft versus host disease (TA-GVHD). TA-GVHD is a rare condition, but occurs more frequently in certain populations at risk for immunocompromise. Although the use of irradiated blood products will vary by institution, the following table from UpToDate summarizes general concepts. Please don’t hesitate to contact the respective blood banks at Parkland, Clements or the VA if questions arise.

Irradiated blood