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Monday, January 6, 2003

New system allows patients to reinfuse own blood

An innovative blood cleaning system is helping to reduce reliance on donated blood for hip and knee replacement patients at Buena Vista Regional Medical Center, as patients are now able to reinfuse their own blood rather than donated fluid following surgery.

The new OrthoPAT machine acts as a washing machine of sorts for the blood of patients, collecting and cleaning red blood cells that will be able to be used by the same patient after orthopedic surgery is complete.

Nurses began using the OrthoPAT for the first time last month, and BVRMC surgical case manager Paula Kopf said the machine has been a good addition to the hospital.

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