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Incidence Obstetric blood transfusion represents a small proportion of overall blood use. However, the use of blood products in obstetrics is rising as postpartum haemorrhage rates continue to increase.
There is evidence of increasing rates of maternal red blood cell transfusion during childbirth worldwide, mainly in the context of postpartum haemorrhage [1–4]. In the United States, there was a steep increase in peripartum transfusion (from 0.3% to 1.0%) between 1998 and 2009 .
Outside the context of major haemorrhage, there is little evidence for the benefit of blood transfusion in fit, healthy, asymptomatic patients. The decision to transfuse must be based on careful clinical assessment in conjunction with the haemoglobin level .