Lida Pousada, MD; Joseph Fiorito, MD; Carole Smyth, RNC, NP
To the Editor: The Federal Drug Administration recently approved marketing of epoetin alfa, a recombinant human erythropoietin, for treatment of anemia in patients with chronic renal failure (1, 2). Epoetin has also been shown to increase the ability of patients to donate autologous blood (3). We report the use of epoetin in a patient with an acute gastrointestinal bleed who, as a Jehovah's Witness, declined blood transfusion.
A 66-year-old woman presented with two episodes of black stools during the previous week and a syncopal episode that day. Rectal examination showed heme-positive black stool. A spun hematocrit was 18%. The patient
Pousada L, Fiorito J, Smyth C. Erythropoietin and Anemia of Gastrointestinal Bleeding in a Jehovah's Witness. Ann Intern Med. 1990;112:552. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-112-7-552_1
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1990;112(7):552.
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