When a patient has TOO MUCH of a good thing, transfusion medicine professionals must sometimes step in and assist in removing red cells, plasma, and/or platelets. Dr. Jeff Winters will help you understand why YOU need to know about these procedures, even if you are not directly involved in therapeutic cytapheresis in your facility.

Jeff Winters

Dr. Jeff Winters

Patients who have excess white blood cells (usually due to leukemia) or platelets (usually in myeloproliferative diseases like Essential Thrombocythemia or Polycythemia Vera) present a unique challenge to transfusion medicine professionals, as do those with sickle cell disease (SCD) in need of exchange transfusion. Different facilities handle these in different ways in the U.S., and in many cases, the Transfusion Medicine department may not even be involved in the treatment. This can leave us feeling “out of the loop.”

Why You Need to Know

Jeff Winters leads a very busy therapeutic apheresis service at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, and he has vast experience dealing with these stressful situations, such as the 1 am call for emergency leukocytapheresis in a patient with an extremely high white blood cell count, or the patient with bleeding despite a 2,000,000/uL platelet count, or the sickle cell patient with acute chest syndrome in need of exchange transfusion. These situations commonly directly involve transfusion medicine professionals, even if the actual procedure is performed by someone else! You need to know the “why” and “why NOT” behind red cell exchange (“Red”), leukocytapheresis (“White”), and thrombocytapheresis (“Yellow”), and there are few, if any, more passionate about explaining than Jeff Winters!

Speaker Bio:

Dr. Jeff Winters is a graduate of the University of Kentucky College of Medicine. His postgraduate training consisted of an Anatomic/Clinical Pathology residency at the University of Kentucky and a Transfusion Medicine/Blood Banking fellowship at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester Minnesota. He is certified by the American Board of Pathology in Anatomic Pathology, Clinical Pathology, and Blood Banking/Transfusion Medicine.

Dr. Winters is a Professor of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology in the Mayo College of Medicine, and is the Program Director of the Mayo Clinic Transfusion Medicine/Blood Banking Fellowship Program, Vice-chair of the Division of Transfusion Medicine, and Medical Director of the Mayo Clinic Therapeutic Apheresis Treatment Unit, a fifteen-bed unit performing approximately 3,000 therapeutic apheresis procedures annually.

Dr. Winters is actively involved in the American Society for Apheresis (ASFA) and previously served as the president of that organization. He is editor-in-chief of the Journal of Clinical Apheresis.

Free CE

This podcast episode offers a FREE continuing education activity where you can earn the following types of credit: 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM, 1 ASCLS P.A.C.E. ® Contact Hour (including Florida Clinical Laboratory Credit), and American Board of Pathology Self-Assessment Modules (SAMs) for Maintenance of Certification MOC).

To receive credit, review the accreditation information and related disclosures, please visit Transfusion News Continuing Education on Wiley Health Learning.

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DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed on this episode are those of my guest and I alone, and do not reflect those of the organizations with which either of us is affiliated. Neither Dr. Winters nor I have any relevant financial disclosures.

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