Previous clinical trials have shown that the use of recombinant human erythropoietin (EPO) can facilitate autologous blood donation and reduce allogeneic blood transfusions in autologous blood donors who are anemic at first donation. However, the role of EPO therapy in nonanemic patients remains undefined. To identify this role, a randomized, controlled, multicenter dose-escalation trial was conducted in patients whose initial hematocrit was > 39 percent (0.39).EPO (150, 300, or 600 units/kg) or placebo was administered intravenously at each of six phlebotomy visits over a 3-week study period. Sixteen (14%) of 116 patients were unable to complete the treatment protocol because of adverse events (n = 11) or for personal reasons (n = 5); 2 patients (1 EPO and 1 placebo) experienced serious adverse events.In 91 evaluable patients, additional red cell production during the study period was 440 +/- 176, 621 +/- 215, 644 +/- 196, and 856 +/- 206 mL (mean +/- SD), respectively, for patients receiving placebo and EPO at 150, 300, and 600 units/kg (p < 0.05 for all EPO groups compared to placebo). However, the percentages of patients in each group who received allogeneic blood did not differ: 2 (9%) of 23 placebo patients and 6 (9%) of 68 EPO patients.It is concluded that, while EPO therapy increased preoperative red cell production, no clinical benefit could be demonstrated in autologous blood donors who were not anemic at first blood donation.
View details for Web of Science ID A1994MQ05800016
View details for PubMedID 8273133