Preventing TRALI at BBG
, Associate Medical Director, oversees medical procedures, regulatory compliance and clinical trials at the South Texas Blood & Tissue Center. She answers the question “What is TRALI?”
TRALI stands for transfusion-related acute lung injury. It is a rare, sometimes deadly respiratory complication that occurs within six hours after receiving a blood transfusion. Symptoms include difficulty breathing, low oxygen levels and excess fluid in the lungs.
According to current theory, TRALI occurs through a two hit process. The first part is an event like shock leading to activated neutrophils or white blood cells in the lungs. The second involves something in the transfusion setting off the activated white blood cells, such as donor antibodies to human leukocyte antigens or bioactive lipids.
Supportive treatment with oxygen and intravenous fluids are used to treat patients with TRALI. The condition, which was listed as the , is now rare because of mitigation strategies.
BioBridge Global has measures in place for TRALI. , women who have been pregnant have their blood tested for antibodies to human leukocyte antigens (HLA), which can be produced during pregnancy. HLA antibodies are found in between 10 and 20 percent of healthy, previously pregnant donors.
Our tests donors for the presence of these antibodies. Donors are then informed if they are positive for these antibodies. They can still donate whole blood or double red cells.
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