David Green, MD, PhD; Ervin Handley, MD
To the Editors: Patients whose religious beliefs preclude acceptance of blood transfusions have been denied major surgery and usually have a protracted convalescence after blood loss. In three Jehovah's Witnesses, we observed that treatment with erythropoietin raised hemoglobin levels pre-operatively to levels that compensated for operative blood loss and enhanced recovery after major hemorrhage.
A 41-year-old Jehovah's Witness was recommended for replacement of a porcine valve placed 11 years earlier. Her hemoglobin was 10.7 g/dL; serum iron, 34 µg%; total iron binding capacity, 224 µg%; and serum ferritin, 601 ng/mL. Treatment with erythropoietin (Ortho Biotech, Raritan, New Jersey), 150 U/kg
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Green D, Handley E. Erythropoietin for Anemia in Jehovah's Witnesses. Ann Intern Med. 1990;113:720–721. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-113-9-720_2
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1990;113(9):720-721.
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Print ISSN: 0003-4819 | Online ISSN: 1539-3704
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