Abstract

Background - Transfusion-related acute lung injury (TRALI) is a rare but potentially fatal transfusion reaction. An effective haemovigilance programme is important in implementing successful and targeted risk reduction strategies. We aim to provide a summary of TRALI cases referred for investigation in Queensland (QLD) Australia from 1999 to 2019, describing the epidemiological
and laboratory features of local TRALI cases.
Materials and methods - A retrospective audit evaluated all cases reported to the QLD Australian Red Cross Lifeblood over the 20-year study period. Cases were categorised according to the 2004 Canadian consensus criteria.
Results - Of the 91 cases referred for investigation, expert review confirmed 30 of TRALI and 18 of possible TRALI. A total of 238 donors and 110 blood products were assessed in confirmed cases. TRALI affected patients of all ages. Most patients had underlying haematological malignancies (25%), surgery (15%) or liver disease (13%). TRALI incidence was measured at 1 in 130,000 per issued
product in QLD. Red cells were transfused in 32 cases, platelets in 18 and plasma products in 21, with 16 cases involving multiple products. Following laboratory assessment, 23% of cases had findings supportive of antibody mediated TRALI and 21% as likely non-antibody mediated. Possible TRALI was identified in 37.5% of cases of which 25% were antibody mediated and 12.5% non-antibody mediated. Nine (18.5%) cases were uncategorised due to insufficient immunologic investigations.
Discussion - Rates of TRALI incidence measured are lower than those seen in many international studies. A reduction in confirmed cases has been noted over recent years, supporting the implementation of risk-reduction strategies. We report a relatively higher proportion of non-antibody mediated TRALI and possible TRALI cases in more recent years, suggesting the need to further understand the role of product age and biological risk modifiers.

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Authors

Aarany Sivakaanthan - Clinical Services and Research, Australian Red Cross Lifeblood, Australia; Faculty of Medicine, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia

Fiona Swain - Cancer Services, Princess Alexandra Hospital, Brisbane, Australia; Pathology Queensland, Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, Brisbane, Australia

Gail Pahn - Transplantation and Immunogenetics Services, Australian Red Cross Lifeblood, Australia

Kathryn Goodison - Clinical Services and Research, Australian Red Cross Lifeblood, Australia

Naadir Gutta - Haematology Department, Mater Hospital, Brisbane, Australia

Rhonda Holdsworth - Transplantation and Immunogenetics Services, Australian Red Cross Lifeblood, Australia

Shoma Baidya - Clinical Services and Research, Australian Red Cross Lifeblood, Australia

John-Paul Tung - Clinical Services and Research, Australian Red Cross Lifeblood, Australia; Faculty of Medicine, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia; Faculty of Health, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia

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