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Bloodless Medicine and Surgery Frequently Asked Questions

Bloodless medicine and surgery refers to the care of a patient’s medical and surgical needs without the use of banked blood products.


Surgeons can perform many procedures without the use of banked blood, such as:

  • Cancer surgeries
  • Heart surgeries
  • Joint replacements
  • Organ transplants

UPMC Presbyterian was the first hospital in the world to perform liver transplants for those who required bloodless medicine and surgery.

Maximizing a person's blood counts prior to surgery is followed by a variety of techniques to decrease surgical blood loss.
While there has been considerable interest in the idea of artificial blood or blood substitutes, no products of this nature are currently available for use in the United States.

Research and clinical trials are currently being conducted about these products.
There are risks and benefits to both accepting and refusing blood transfusions. Every person's case is different.

Reducing the use of banked blood does limit your potential exposure to blood-borne disease.

Your doctor will discuss the options with you and explain all the risks before any procedure.

UPMC Bloodless Medicine and Surgery Services offers bloodless surgery, as well as guidance and support for bloodless medicine patients and their doctors.

For further information, call the center toll-free at 1-877-674-7111.