International Heart Journal
Online ISSN : 1349-3299
Print ISSN : 1349-2365
ISSN-L : 1349-2365
Clinical Studies
Impact of Red Blood Cell Transfusion on Subsequent Cardiovascular Events in Patients with Acute Heart Failure and Anemia
Yukihiro WatanabeShuhei TaraTakuya NishinoKatsuhito KatoYoshiaki KubotaDaisuke HayashiKosuke MozawaJunya MatsudaHideki MiyachiYukichi TokitaYu-ki IwasakiMasahiro YasutakeKuniya Asai
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Supplementary material

2024 Volume 65 Issue 2 Pages 190-198


Red blood cell (RBC) transfusion therapy is often performed in patients with acute heart failure (AHF) and anemia; however, its impact on subsequent cardiovascular events is unclear. We examined whether RBC transfusion influences major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE) after discharge in patients with AHF and anemia.

We classified patients with AHF and anemia (nadir hemoglobin level < 10 g/dL) according to whether they received RBC transfusion during hospitalization. The endpoint was MACE (composite of all-cause death, non-fatal acute coronary syndrome/stroke, or heart failure readmission) 180 days after discharge. For survival analysis, we used propensity score matching analysis with the log-rank test. As sensitivity analysis, we performed inverse probability weighting analysis and multivariable Cox regression analysis.

Among 448 patients with AHF and anemia (median age, 81 years; male, 55%), 155 received RBC transfusion and 293 did not. The transfused patients had worse clinical features than the non-transfused patients, with lower levels of nadir hemoglobin and serum albumin and a lower estimated glomerular filtration rate. In the propensity-matched cohort of 87 pairs, there was no significant difference in the MACE-free survival rate between the 2 groups (transfused, 73.8% vs. non-transfused, 65.3%; P = 0.317). This result was consistent in the inverse probability weighting analysis (transfused, 76.0% vs. non-transfused, 68.7%; P = 0.512), and RBC transfusion was not significantly associated with post-discharge MACE in the multivariable Cox regression analysis (adjusted hazard ratio: 1.468, 95% confidence interval: 0.976-2.207; P = 0.065).

In conclusion, this study suggests that RBC transfusions for anemia may not improve clinical outcomes in patients with AHF.

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© 2024 by the International Heart Journal Association
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