Transfusion-Free Medicine and Surgery

Transfusion-Free Techniques During Surgery

Depending on the nature of the procedure, your surgical team will assemble and prepare to use a variety of instruments and techniques designed to minimize your blood loss, maximize oxygen delivery and maintain your blood volume.

Some of these techniques may include:

  • Hemodilution: the drawing off of a calculated amount of blood and the dilution of the blood remaining in the circulatory system with an IV solution. When needed or at the end of the procedure, the blood in the reservoir is redirected or returned.
  • Intra-operative blood salvage (cell saver): used during major procedures such as hip and knee replacements, prostate surgery, and vascular surgery. This process recovers blood lost from the surgical area and washes, filters and returns it to your body.
  • Oximetry: a special sensor that monitors the oxygen saturation in the blood.
  • Hypotensive anesthesia: a technique of lowering the blood pressure during surgery.
  • Harmonic scalpel: developed and pioneered here at Rhode Island Hospital—a surgical instrument for cutting and coagulation in laparoscopic and open surgical procedures
  • Argon beam coagulator: a device used to coagulate or clot bleeding tissue
  • Electrocautery: a procedure used to seal blood vessels, to reduce or stop bleeding