Center for Innovations in Bloodless Surgery and Medicine
Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital is one of the elite academic health centers in the United States that offers bloodless techniques in every surgical and medical specialty, including emergency care delivered at the Level I Trauma Center.
Located in New Brunswick, NJ, the hospital's Center for Innovations in Bloodless Surgery and Medicine offers a multidisciplinary team of physicians, nurses and healthcare professionals who set a national standard in providing bloodless treatment approaches for a variety of elective as well as emergency procedures. This outstanding team is committed to ensuring community access to superior medical and surgical care without blood transfusions.
"We have the technology and we have the knowledge," states Andrew Boyarsky, MD, surgical director of the Center, "but most of all we have the commitment to respect patients' religious beliefs or personal preferences when it comes to avoiding blood transfusions." Dr. Boyarsky is also Associate Professor of Clinical Surgery at UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.
Such an expansive approach to bloodless medicine and surgery requires a unique combination of the latest technology and research data with enormous commitment and skill on the part of the healthcare team. Jeffrey L. Carson, MD, medical director at the Center for Innovations in Bloodless Surgery and Medicine at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, is a nationally renowned expert on transfusion-free medicine. His federally funded studies published in the Journal of the American Medical Association and the British Medical Journal Lancet have helped dispel some of the myths regarding when transfusions are considered necessary by healthcare providers. Dr. Carson is also Chief of General Internal Medicine for UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, where he is the Richard C. Reynolds Professor of Medicine.
In a major study examining the case records of nearly 2,000 adult Jehovah's Witnesses who underwent surgery without transfusions at 12 hospitals, including Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, Dr. Carson reported that most patients did very well. In another study comparing patients who did and did not receive blood across a data base of 8,787 hip surgery patients, Dr. Carson and his colleagues reported that transfusions increased the rate of complications, but did not improve survival rates.
Some patients are amazed to discover that even open-heart surgery is available as a bloodless procedure at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital. As in other types of surgery and treatment protocols, the team employs a variety of techniques including prescribing medication that fortifies the patient's red blood cells before he or she comes to the operation room. State-of-the-art equipment, such as the cell-saver machine, blood coagulators and electrocautery devices are also employed to reduce the need for transfusions.