WBD Platelets

“WBD” stands for “whole blood-derived,” and as a result, this term refers to platelets that are obtained from a single whole blood donation (some people also call them “random donor” platelets). This product is not the same as the most commonly used form of platelets in the US today, apheresis-derived platelets. In the US, WBD platelets are harvested using the so-called “platelet-rich plasma” technique, while in Europe and Canada, the “buffy coat” technique is used. Either method results in a product that, by itself, is typically not an adequate therapeutic dose for adults (the FDA requires them to to contain at least 5.5 x 1010 platelets per bag). As a result, these platelets are usually “pooled” with from three to nine other WBD platelet units to make a “dose.” The pooled product is called a “four pack,” or “six pack,” etc, depending on the number of units in the pool. This terminology leads to confusion among clinical staff, and perhaps a “dose” is a better way to describe the proper order to them.

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