Blood Transfusion During Surgery - Endometriosis UK

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Blood Transfusion During Surgery


Hi, all. I got a phone call from the hospital today following my pre-op on Wednesday. I'm anaemic due to low iron levels and have been for a long time now. I know this is bad, but I don't take my iron tablets. Anyway, during this phone call I was told to take my iron tablets as I should, otherwise I could risk having to have a blood transfusion during surgery. I am going to do what they have told me, but I'm scared that I'll still have to have a blood transfusion. In the past when I have actually taken my iron tablets, my blood results have shown no improvement. So I'm terrified that there will be no improvement between now and my surgery date (6th august) and that I'll have to have a blood transfusion at the surgery 😓 I'm scared enough as it is about the surgery.

Has anyone been in a similar position to me? Or ever had a blood transfusion?

Thanks x

10 Replies

Hi Jess. I had a blood transfusion after my hysterectomy due to a large internal bleed. Honestly it’s nothing to worry about.

My father in law was severely anemic and tablets didn’t help him either. He had to have iron infusions.

What is it that’s worrying you about possibly needing a transfusion?

Jess96 in reply to JeanOsborne

Hi, Jean. How did you feel when having the blood transfusion? Is an iron infusion the same as a blood transfusion?

I'm scared because they don't give blood transfusions to every patient, so I feel like I'm going to become really ill or critical during the surgery, and that will result in the blood transfusion. I'm worried about waking up and feeling really bad, if it's come to needing one. And I've had doctors use scaring tactics with me, like 'if you don't improve your iron, you'll have to have a blood transfusion, and that's not nice.' So I see it as a horrible thing to have to experience because it's the final straw sort of thing.

I think I've made a big deal of it in my mind, but is it not a big deal? 😓 Does it feel the same as being on a drip? But instead of the painkillers and meds on the rack, it's blood.

Thank you for your reply x

JeanOsborne in reply to Jess96

Hi Jess. I actually didn’t really notice any difference when I had mine. I needed 5 units/bags so it took a long time! My main problem was my veins kept collapsing so they kept having to change to a different one.

They are not trying to scare you but they have to pre warn just incase it’s needed.

A blood transfusion and iron transfusion are different things. They gave my father in law the iron infusion because he was about to start chemo and at 80 years old it was more to give him an extra boost.

Honestly sweetheart there really is nothing to worry about.

You’ll be just fine.

Always here for you. Xxx

Jess96 in reply to JeanOsborne

That's good that you didn't really notice any difference. I imagine they would have to keep changing where the cannula is if it's that long of a process. I hope it was ok for you.

Thank you for your reply, it's made me feel better about the possibility of having it done. You're like my guardian angel who comes to comment on my posts haha 😄 Thank you xxx

Hey I am waiting to go through the procedure called and embolization due to having a large fibriod. I have been bleeding every day for 1 year and half with not even one day in that time that I haven’t bled. It has been absolutely horrendous heavy bleeding huge blood clots, no energy. In the last 6 weeks I have had to had 2 blood transfusion of 2 bags of blood each time because I could hardly breath due to my blood count being once 7.9 and the other time 8.5. To put your mind at rest getting the transfusion was fine it takes about 3-4 hours per bag of blood it is not sore but you can have a slight fever but I never experienced that although they monitor your blood pressure and temp every hour and they said mine slightly went up. I must admit after the transfusion the breathlessness was away and I had colour back in my face again. Now all I have to do is hope that I get this procedure done in the next 3 weeks before I need another transfusion. Hope all goes well xxx

Jess96 in reply to Bitch1

Hi. I'm sorry you've been bleeding for that long. That sounds so tough! Have you ever been on a drip with medication attached? If so, does a blood transfusion feel the same? I've been on a drip before and I couldn't feel the liquid at all, so for all I knew it could have been blood, I guess 😟

So you feel the positive effects immediately? That's good. I'm worried about feeling really ill if I've gotten to the stage of needing a blood transfusion. I'm going to keep up with my iron tablets, but would you recommend any way for me to prepare, just in case I do need one?

Thank you for your reassuring reply ☺️ I hope you do get your procedure done soon. I have my fingers crossed for you xxx

Bitch1 in reply to Jess96

Hey, you do not need to prepare before a blood transfusion all I got was a phone call from the doctor to tell me that my blood level had dropped to low again and she asked how I felt when I told her how breathless I was she phoned the gyn ward and they told me to go straight over. And yes it is just the same as having a drip put up for say saline or intravenous antibiotics and you don’t feel any difference well I didn’t and I am the biggest panicker you could meet. And yes I reckon after the first bag of blood I could feel the difference even the nurses said I had more colour in my face. You don’t feel instantly like oh I can get up and do anything but it definitely gives u just that extra bit of energy that has been zapped right out of you when your blood level has dropped so low. I hope I have explained myself okay as I do waffle on a bit I have MS also and my brain fog kind of makes me side track a bit lol . The main things they say when ur blood goes to low to watch out for and to go straight to your accident and emergency department is dizziness, breathlessness and heart palpitations. So please if you have any of these make sure u seek advice straight away as that’s what I was advised.

Jess96 in reply to Bitch1

Ahh I see, that's a relief then. It doesn't sound too bad then if you feel the benefits in that way. It's not nice having low energy all the time. Yes you have, don't worry about it, your reply has made me feel better about the possibility of having it done. I hope it doesn't get to the point where I have to have it done, but at least now I'm not worrying about it. Ok, will do. Thank you! x

Hi, ive had 2 blood transfusion in the past. So they feel no different to getting fluids through iv but there are very serious but very rare side effects. Your blood can react to the donated blood but there is so many safety procedures in place now to protect against this, this is also the reason why you get your obs (blood pressure, pulse, temp) checked regularly at first. The doctor will take a blood sample from you and "group and save" blood for you. After having a blood transfusion you will never be able to donate blood in the future but when needed blood transfusions are a life saver. Good luck!

Jess96 in reply to Hazel173

Hi. I've had fluids throughout a drip before, so I'm glad it feels the same as that. Ohh ok, I hope I don't get any of the side effects, did you? To be honest, I don't think I could donate blood anyway because I'm the one in need of blood, due to my low iron haha. Thank you very much! Thank you for your reply ☺️

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