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Open Access Research article

Perioperative blood transfusion adversely affects prognosis after resection of lung cancer: a systematic review and a meta-analysis

Haixing Luan1, Feng Ye2, Lupeng Wu2, Yanming Zhou2* and Jie Jiang3*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Anesthesiology, First Hospital Affiliated to Xiamen University, Xiamen 361003, China

2 Department of Hepatobiliary & Pancreatovascular Surgery, Oncologic Center of Xiamen; First affiliated Hospital of Xiamen University, Xiamen 361003, China

3 Department of Thoracic Surgery, First affiliated Hospital of Xiamen University; Oncologic Center of Xiamen, Xiamen 361003, China

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BMC Surgery 2014, 14:34  doi:10.1186/1471-2482-14-34

Published: 23 May 2014



It is speculated that blood transfusion may induce adverse consequences after cancer surgery due to immunosuppression. This study was intended to assess the impact of perioperative blood transfusion on the prognosis of patients who underwent lung cancer resection.


Eligible studies were identified through a computerized literature search. The pooled relative risk ratio (RR) with 95% confidence interval (CI) was calculated using Review Manager 5.1 Software.


Eighteen studies with a total of 5915 participants were included for this meta-analysis. Pooled analysis showed that perioperative blood transfusion was associated with worse overall survival (RR: 1.25, 95% CI: 1.13-1.38; P <0.001) and recurrence-free survival (RR: 1.42, 95% CI: 1.20-1.67; P <0.001) in patients with resected lung cancer.


Perioperative blood transfusion appears be associated with a worse prognosis in patients undergoing lung cancer resection. These data highlight the importance of minimizing blood transfusion during surgery.

Lung cancer; Blood transfusion; Survival; Surgery; Meta-analysis