When possible, the cause of the anemia is treated. When the Hb falls dangerously low (eg, < 7 g/dL for patients without cardiopulmonary insufficiency or higher for patients with it), RBC transfusion temporarily increases O2-carrying capacity. RBC transfusion should be reserved for patients
Transfusion procedures and blood components are discussed in Transfusion Medicine.
Last full review/revision June 2008 by Alan E. Lichtin, MD