A prospective assessment of the medic autologous blood transfusion skills for field transfusion preparation

Steven G. Schauer*, Fabiola Mancha, Jessica Mendez, Melody A. Martinez, Erika A. Jeschke, Michael D. April, Andrew D. Fisher, Derek J. Brown, Wells L. Weymouth, Jason B. Corley, Ronnie Hill, Andrew P. Cap

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: Data demonstrate the benefit of blood product administration near point-of-injury (POI). Fresh whole blood transfusion from a pre-screened donor provides a source of blood at the POI when resources are constrained. We captured transfusion skills data for medics performing autologous blood transfusion training. Methods: We conducted a prospective, observational study of medics with varying levels of experience. Inexperienced medics were those with minimal or no reported experience learning the autologous transfusion procedures, versus reported experience among special operations medics. When available, medics were debriefed after the procedure for qualitative feedback. We followed them for up to 7 days for adverse events. Results: The median number of attempts for inexperienced and experienced medics was 1 versus 1 (interquartile range 1–1 for both, p =.260). The inexperienced medics had a slower median time to needle venipuncture access for the donation of 7.3 versus 1.5 min, needle removal after clamping time of 0.3 versus 0.2 min, time to bag preparation of 1.9 versus 1.0 min, time to IV access for reinfusion of 6.0 versus 3.0 min, time to transfusion completion of 17.3 versus 11.0 min, and time to IV removal of 0.9 versus 0.3 min (all p <.05). We noted one administrative safety event in which an allogeneic transfusion occurred. No major adverse events occurred. Qualitative data saturated around the need for quarterly training. Conclusions: Inexperienced medics have longer procedure times when training autologous whole blood transfusion skills. This data will help establish training measures of performance for skills optimization when learning this procedure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S67-S76
Issue numberS3
StatePublished - May 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • battlefield
  • blood
  • fresh
  • military
  • prehospital
  • warm
  • whole


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