Related Questions

Why are red blood cell transfusions commonly used to treat some patients with anemia?

Replacement. Anemia is basically a lower than normal number of red blood cells. If it is bad enough, it may be life-threatening because red cells carry oxygen to tissues. A transfusion fixes (at least temporarily) the problem by "filling the tank". Transfusions carry their own risks and are not treated lightly by doctors! Read more...
Safety. If anemia is severe, whatever the cause, blood transfusion may be necessary and even life saving. Whenever possible, the underlying cause of the anemia should be identified and corrected, but if the anemia cannot be reversed quickly (like massive bleeding for example) transfusion may be the only way for the patient to survive. Read more...