Blood Transfusions

A blood transfusion is the process of transferring blood, or any of its parts, from one person to another. Boston Children's Hospital's Blood Donor Center is an independent collection facility serving the needs of pediatric patients in the Longwood Medical Area. Established in 1958, primarily to provide fresh blood for the new field of open-heart surgery, they now supply virtually all of the blood and blood products used at Boston Children's.

  • Several different parts of the blood can be transfused.

  • Red blood cells are the most common

  • All blood donors are volunteers.

  • Before a blood transfusion, donor blood is carefully tested and cross-matched with recipient blood to make sure it is compatible.

  • The most common side effects of a blood transfusion are: headachefever, itching, extra effort needed to breathe and rash.