Profiles of blood and blood component transfusion recipients in Zimbabwe

Nyashadzaishe Mafirakureva, Star Khoza, Oliver Hassall, Brian E Faragher, Isaac Kajja, David A Mvere, Jean C Emmanuel, Maarten J Postma, Marinus van Hulst

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND: There are limited published data on the characteristics of blood transfusion recipients in sub-Saharan Africa. This study describes the demographic characteristics of blood transfusion recipients and patterns of blood and blood component use in Zimbabwe.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Data on the characteristics of the blood transfusion recipients (age, sex, blood group), blood components received (type, quantity), discharge diagnoses and outcomes following transfusion (discharge status, duration of stay in hospital), were retrospectively collected from four major hospitals for the period from January 1, 2012 to December 31, 2012. Diagnoses were grouped into broad categories according to the disease headings of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10). Surgical procedures were grouped into broad categories according to organ system using ICD-9.

RESULTS: Most of the 1,793 transfusion recipients studied were female (63.2%) and in the reproductive age group, i.e. 15-49 years (65.3%). The median age of the recipients was 33 years (range, 0-93). The majority of these recipients (n=1,642; 91.6%) received a red blood cell transfusion. The majority of the patients were diagnosed with conditions related to pregnancy and childbirth (22.3%), and diseases of blood and blood-forming organs (17.7%). The median time spent in hospital was 8 days (range, 0-214) and in-hospital mortality was 15.4%.

DISCUSSION: Our sample of blood transfusion recipients were fairly young and most of them received red blood cell transfusions. The majority of patients in the reproductive age group received blood transfusions for pregnancy and childbirth-related diagnoses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)600-9
Number of pages10
JournalBlood Transfusion
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2015


  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Distribution
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Blood Component Transfusion/statistics & numerical data
  • Blood Transfusion/statistics & numerical data
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Hematologic Diseases/epidemiology
  • Hospital Mortality
  • Hospitals, Private/statistics & numerical data
  • Hospitals, Public/statistics & numerical data
  • Hospitals, Urban/statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • International Classification of Diseases
  • Length of Stay/statistics & numerical data
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms/epidemiology
  • Patient Discharge/statistics & numerical data
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications/epidemiology
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sex Distribution
  • Surgical Procedures, Operative/statistics & numerical data
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult
  • Zimbabwe/epidemiology

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