4 doctors weighed in:
How low can hemoglobin go before you need a transfusion?
4 doctors weighed in

Dr. Michael Taylor
Critical Care
3 doctors agree
In brief: It depends...
What's the cause? How quickly has the hemoglobin dropped/is there any ongoing bleeding? Is there evidence of inadequate tissue perfusion? What other acute & chronic medical problems does the patient have? In critically ill patients who aren't bleeding, a hemoglobin as low as 7 g/dl is generally well tolerated.
Decision to transfuse should be based on desired physiologic effect, not on a number.

In brief: It depends...
What's the cause? How quickly has the hemoglobin dropped/is there any ongoing bleeding? Is there evidence of inadequate tissue perfusion? What other acute & chronic medical problems does the patient have? In critically ill patients who aren't bleeding, a hemoglobin as low as 7 g/dl is generally well tolerated.
Decision to transfuse should be based on desired physiologic effect, not on a number.
Dr. Michael Taylor
Dr. Michael Taylor
Thank
1 comment
Dr. Barry Rosen
...and one unit at a time unless life-threatening bleeding is occurring.
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