Doctors from the University of Copenhagen, Denmark, investigated the relationship between blood storage time, and long-term survival and disease recurrence for patients undergoing elective resection for colorectal cancer.
740 patients undergoing surgery for colorectal cancer were included in the study. None of the patients received chemotherapy or radiotherapy either before or after surgery.
|Disease recurrence was more likely in patients receiving transfused blood less than 21 days old.
|Diseases of the Colon and Rectum|
The research team reviewed disease recurrence and long-term survival in patients who survived the first 30 days after operation.
452 patients required transfusion during surgery. They received buffy-coat-depleted red cells suspended in saline, glucose, and mannitol blood. The research team compared the outcome of receiving blood stored for less than 21 days prior to transfusion with blood stored for more than 21 days.
After a median follow-up of 6.8 years, median survival was 4.6 years for non-transfused patients and 3.0 years for transfused patients. Survival for patients receiving transfused blood stored for less than 21 days was 2.5 years, compared to 3.7 years for blood stored for longer than 21 days.
The research team report a significantly increased risk of disease recurrence for patients receiving transfused blood stored for less than 21 days (odds ratio 1.5) compared to non-transfused patients.
Dr Tommie Mynster, one of the authors of the study, concludes, "Transfusion of blood stored for less than 21 days may be an independent risk factor for development of recurrence after elective colorectal surgery."