Learn More About Reusable Blood Warmer

By Margaret Snyder

Generally, when you donate blood and is not transfused to a patient at that time, it has to be stored in a refrigerator so as to enhance its life. Obvious, the temperature in a refrigerator is far much below the normal body blood temperature. It happens that this ice-cold fluid is transfused into the body system, conditions like hyperthermia, arrhythmias, and shock are likely to occur. That is why reusable blood warmer are used so as to provide the fluid with the necessary and appropriate temperature before being incorporated into the body.

These devices come in three different types in regard to the warming technique and technology used. The first type is the one that uses dry heat method. The other types include using a water bath and the other countercurrent. This can be done before transfusion or during the process which is referred to as in-line warming. The device, however, is made with a technology that prevents any loss of heat but it does not provide heat retaining methods.

Once you raise the temperature to the one required which is thirty-seven degree Celsius, you transfuse the fluid into your body since when you don't do it, it will naturally cool down to where the temperature was initially. Additionally, it can provide heat without interfering with the living cells like WBC and RBC.

In most cases, these devices are used during mass transfer of blood or to patients who require more than fifty percent of the body blood volume. They are also used when the volumes to be administered requires urgency or need to be done rapidly. This is because, if a large amount is transfused when cold the mentioned cases are likely to occur due to temperature lowering beyond the recommended range. They are also used when the patients receiving the blood have cold agglutinins.

However, it is important to have certain specific considerations before administering the procedure to patients who are elderly, pediatric, neonates, as well as those with chronic infections and cardiac dysfunction. However, the device should be operating before the entire exercise begins. One of the reasons being that it cannot be switched on, at the same time, it is has provided the required temperature.

The devices are supposed to be in operation mode prior to the exercise so as to provide temperature rise in a gradual and systematic way not in a random way that can affect the cells. When properly utilized, negative effects associated with cold temperature will not be experienced. The devices, on the other hand, are not disposed after a single use as they are reused. They are also convenient devices more the countercurrent that requires auto start-stop to keep the required temperature.

However, it has certain limitations such as failure or temperature maintain technology. It can only prevent loss of heat by active warming but does not have a way in which the patient can be kept warm. That is why other methods like warming, water, blankets as well as pads can be used as another way or remedy to conditions like hypothermia.

They are not effective in providing warmth as other ways like using hot water baths, blankets, and pads do better than them in reducing hypothermia. However, their use cannot be compared with cold transfusions.

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