Perioperative Anemia and Transfusion in Colorectal Cancer Patients

  1. Home
  2. Articles

Perioperative Anemia and Transfusion in Colorectal Cancer Patients

Irina Ristescu, Georgiana Pintilie, Diana Filip, Mirel Jitca, Rafaela Fecheta, Ioana Florescu, Viorel Scripcariu, Daniela Filipescu, Ioana Grigoraş
Original article, no. 2, 2019
Article DOI: 10.21614/chirurgia.114.2.234
Background: Both anemia and blood transfusion are now considered independent risk factors for poor outcome in colorectal cancer patients. Severe anemia can increase tumor aggressiveness and blood transfusion may induce immunosuppression and promote cancer recurrence. Specific Patient Blood Management (PBM) strategies for oncological surgical patients are insufficiently defined and recommended.

Primary objectives: Evaluation of the perioperative anemia prevalence and transfusion rate in colorectal cancer patients.
Secondary objectives: Sub-group analysis of anemic versus non-anemic patients and colon versus rectal cancer patients.

Methods: We retrospectively reviewed records from all consecutive surgical oncological patients admitted between January and June 2017. We selected major lower abdominal surgical patients and then colorectal surgical patients. We evaluated the perioperative hemoglobin values dynamics (preoperative=Hb1, postoperative= Hb2, at discharge= Hb3), anemia prevalence and severity and transfusion rate. Statistical analysis used Student t test, Wilcoxon signed-rank and Chi-square tests from SPSS 17. Results: Of the 1284 patients screened, 546 patients were submitted to major lower abdominal surgery and 260 patients to colorectal cancer surgery. The mean age was 65.6 +- 11.1 years, 57.7% males. The perioperative dynamics of hemoglobin was Hb1/Hb2/Hb3 =12/10.6/10.4 g/dL. Anemia prevalence was 52.3/82.3/82.6% preoperatively/postoperatively/at hospital discharge. Global transfusion rate was 23.8%, with pre/intra/postoperative distribution of 2.3/11.9/10.8%. Anemic patients were older (p=0.005), with a higher transfusion rate (p 0.001) and a longer hospital LOS (p=0.04).
Colon cancer patients had lower Hb values (p=0.001) and higher prevalence of preoperative anemia (p=0.001) comparing with rectal cancer patients.

Conclusions: The analysis of this cohort of colorectal cancer patients identified an increased prevalence of anemia in all perioperative phases. There is an urgent need of PBM program implementation in this selected group of surgical patients.

Keywords: anemia, blood transfusion, colorectal cancer