Pancreaticoduodenectomy After Neoadjuvant Therapy in a Jehovah's Witness with Locally Advanced Pancreatic Cancer: Case Report and Approach to Avoid Transfusion

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Although the morbidity and mortality rates associated with pancreaticoduodenectomy (PD) have been improving over the past several decades, perioperative transfusions are often needed. Here, we review the preoperative planning and overall management of a Jehovah's Witness patient with locally advanced pancreatic cancer who would not accept blood transfusion. Management of this case is reviewed, along with the relevant literature regarding major surgery in the Jehovah's Witness population. The use of neoadjuvant chemoradiation was used successfully in locally advanced disease, allowing surgical resection. In addition, we outline a cogent strategy using pre-, intra-, and postoperative techniques to minimize blood loss and maintain hemoglobin at acceptable levels thereby preventing the need for transfusion. These strategies, once in place, may be able to reduce transfusions in all patients having major resections for malignancy.

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