The perioperative care of Jehovah's Witnesses


      Jehovah's Witnesses are a Christian denomination with around 8 million members worldwide. They belief the teachings of the Bible prohibit the transfusion of blood and blood components. Some blood products may be deemed acceptable as part of their beliefs and they may be accepting of intraoperative techniques such as cell salvage. Jehovah's Witnesses have the right to accept or refuse treatment without providing a reason for doing therefore medical practitioners must respect these even if this would pose threat to the patient's life. Care of the Jehovah's Witness should employ a multidisciplinary team approach with senior clinicians. Goals of management include to optimize oxygen delivery and haemoglobin synthesis, reduce blood loss, and correct any coagulopathy.


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