What are RBC-transfusion-dependence and -independence? Letter uri icon


MeSH Major

  • Erythrocyte Transfusion


  • The term RBC-transfusion-dependence is widely-used by hematologists to describe a condition of severe anemia typically arising when erythropoiesis is reduced such that a person continuously requires ≥1 RBC-transfusions over a specified interval. Defining a person as RBC-transfusion-dependent has important implications in diverse hematological disorders especially because it strongly-correlated with decreased survival. Conversely, becoming RBC-transfusion-independent or receiving fewer RBC-transfusions over a specified interval is defined as improvement or response in many disease- and/or therapy-setting. Whether this correlates with improved survival is controversial. We used a structured expert-panel consensus panel process to define RBC-transfusion-dependence and -independence or improvement. We suggest these definitions may prove useful to persons studying or treating these diseases.

publication date

  • January 2011



  • Letter


Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.leukres.2010.07.015

PubMed ID

  • 20692036

Additional Document Info

start page

  • 8

end page

  • 11


  • 35


  • 1