Types of transfusion

Transfusions may be required if you are very low in key components of blood. There are many medical conditions or problems that can result in low or poorly functioning components in your blood. Whole blood, platelet and plasma donations are used by Lifeblood to manufacture different blood products such as red cells, platelets, plasma, cryodepleted plasma and cryoprecipitate.

Red Cell

Red cell transfusion may be required if you have a low haemoglobin or red cell count (anaemia). Red cells carry oxygen needed by all cells in your body.


Platelet transfusion may be required if you have a low platelet count (thrombocytopaenia). Platelets assist with forming blood clots.


Fresh frozen plasma (FFP) also known as plasma, is the blood component made once all the blood cells are removed from whole blood. It is used to replace missing or low levels of blood proteins in a range of medical and surgical situations.

Cryodepleted plasma

Cryodepleted plasma is plasma that has had some blood clotting proteins (cryoprecipitate) removed. It is mostly used for a condition known as thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP).


Cryoprecipitate contains clotting proteins, fibrinogen in particular. It is most commonly used as part of a massive transfusion where large numbers of blood components are required to assist with clotting.


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