Blood Warmer

What is a blood warmer?

A blood warmer increases the temperature of blood being transfused into a patient.

Why is it necessary?

After a unit of blood is donated, it is prepared and then cooled for storage in the blood bank. A blood warmer is not usually necessary if only one or two units of blood are given over a period of several hours. However, when many units of cooled blood are given in a short time, body temperature may drop to dangerous levels, a condition called hypothermia.

Therefore, under emergency circumstances, when blood is transfused very rapidly a blood warmer is used to prevent hypothermia. The blood warmer in the picture is capable of warming two units of blood simultaneously.

Does it hurt?

No

How long is it used?

A blood warmer is used during blood transfusion. Occasionally the blood warmer may be used to warm the IV fluids given to a patient with a low temperature.

Blood Warmer (indicated by arrows)