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February 19, 1938

Current Comment

JAMA. 1938;110(8):584-585. doi:10.1001/jama.1938.02790080042017

RETRANSFUSION SHOCK  Earlier immunologists who had occasion to make numerous blood transfusions in dogs found that toxic reactions never take place on primary transfusion in this animal species regardless of the age, sex, size or breed of recipient or donor. Not until physiologists had occasion to perform repeated blood transfusions from the same donor was an occasional retransfusion shock noted. These retransfusion incompatibilities have been studied in considerable detail by Melnick and Cowgill1 of Yale University. In their hands the occasional toxic reaction on retransfusion exhibits all the characteristic features of acute anaphylactic shock in this animal species. They found that an incubation period of about one week is necessary between the first and second transfusions in order to produce retransfusion shock and that the acquired incompatibility usually lasts from five to ten weeks. The Yale biochemists found that during the sensitive period the serum of the recipient will both hemolyze and agglutinate donor erythrocytes. Donor serum, however, is

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