A study by researchers at the Connecticut Children's Medical Center in the US has found that trauma victims are twice as likely to die when given blood that has been stored for a longer time.
Lead researcher Dr Philip Spinella, a critical care specialist at Connecticut Children's Medical Center, opined that trauma victoms were unable to deal with blood that has been stored for a longer time - in this case more than 28 days - because they get old red cells, which may not survive for long in the patient's body.
"Some patients would be better off not having a transfusion than getting old red cells," he added. The authors call for revision of legal guidelines on exactly how long blood can be stored before being transfused.
The details of the study appear in the journal Critical Care.