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To the Editor:—
In our very first papers on the treatment of erythroblastosis by exchange transfusion, it was pointed out that the purpose of the procedure is to remove red cells coated with univalent Rh antibodies and to replace them by inagglutinable type Rh red blood cells. The validity of this rationale was established by the significant reduction in the immediate mortality rate for the disease following treatment by exchange transfusion. In addition, it was soon observed that the babies who survived developed normally both physically and mentally.In erythroblastotic babies who survive, the most dreaded complication is mental retardation and other evidences of brain damage resulting from the disease. The incidence of neurologic sequelae following erythroblastosis has been reported in the literature as ranging from 10 to 30 per cent. Among our own patients treated by exchange transfusion, 23 have now survived more than eighteen months and up to
Wiener AS, Wexler IB, Gibbel NF. DOES EXCHANGE TRANSFUSION PREVENT NEUROLOGIC SEQUELAE OF ERYTHROBLASTOSIS FETALIS?. JAMA. 1949;141(4):280-281. doi:10.1001/jama.1949.02910040042021