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Reassessing the Safety Concerns of Utilizing Blood Donations from Patients with Hemochromatosis.

Reassessing the Safety Concerns of Utilizing Blood Donations from Patients with Hemochromatosis.
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Winters AC, Tremblay D, Arinsburg S, Mascarenhas J, Schiano TD,


Winters AC, Tremblay D, Arinsburg S, Mascarenhas J, Schiano TD, (click to view)

Winters AC, Tremblay D, Arinsburg S, Mascarenhas J, Schiano TD,

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Hepatology (Baltimore, Md.) 2017 09 13() doi 10.1002/hep.29521
Abstract

Hereditary hemochromatosis (HH) is a genetic disorder of iron metabolism which may lead to iron overload. Clinical penetrance is low, however those afflicted may develop cirrhosis, hepatocellular carcinoma, diabetes mellitus and cardiomyopathy. Treatment involves regular phlebotomy to reduce the systemic iron burden. In many countries-including the United States-numerous blood centers do not accept donated blood obtained from HH patients during therapeutic phlebotomy and there are inconsistent positions regarding this globally. This refusal is borne out of a few concerns. First, there is a theoretical increase in the infectious risk of these blood products, particularly by siderophilic organisms such as Yersinia enterocolitica. Second, given the increased incidence of hepatitis C infection from non-voluntary donors in the 1970s, there is a concern that blood from HH donors may harbor additional risk given the non-voluntary nature of their presentation. In this review, we examine the existing biologic and clinical data concerning infectious risk and summarize clinical experience from centers allowing HH donors, and demonstrate that blood from HH patients is safe and should be allowed into the donor pool. We conclude that there is no convincing evidence to exclude this population from serving as blood donors. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

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