Supportive transfusion therapy in patients with breast cancer

Original article

Ana Antić, Zvonko Zlatanović, Nebojša Vacić



Anemia is the most common disorder in patients with breast cancer, and its frequency and severity depend on the stage and duration of the disease, applied therapeutic procedures, frequency of infections, as well as possible surgical intervention. Anemia in breast cancer increases the chance of disease progression 3 times, and reduces the relapse-free interval and the overall survival of the patient, while patients who have anemia during the application of adjuvant chemotherapy have a higher risk of local relapse and reduced survival. This paper retrospectively evaluated the use of red blood cell transfusions in patients with breast cancer who were treated at the Oncology Clinic of the University Clinical Center (UCC) Niš in 2022. During the observed period, 57 patients with breast cancer received a transfusion of 197 units of red blood cells, which is 3,45 transfused units per patient (range: 1-5 units). All transfused patients were treated with chemotherapy, while 19 patients were irradiated. According to hemoglobin (Hb) concentration, 80,4% of patients were transfused at Hb< 80g/l, and even 22,5% had severe anemia (Hb<50g/l). No transfusion reactions were reported. For the purpose of more effective transfusion treatment of patients with breast cancer, it is necessary to monitor the latest knowledge and attitudes about the clinical application of blood components, as well as the interdisciplinary cooperation of clinical doctors and transfusiologist.

Key words: breast cancer, anemia, transfusion

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