Platelets

Each unit of platelets contains 5 x 1010 platelets in 60 mL of plasma. They are stored for up to 5 days. They must be stored at room temperature to maintain their activity (-70%). Each unit of pooled platelets will typically increase the platelet count by 10,000. Platelets are given to correct nonimmune thrombocytopenia. Patients with immune thrombocytopenia (ITP) do not respond with increased counts following administration of platelets. If these transfusions are needed to support surgery for ITP splenectomy, then they should not be administered until the splenic hilum is clamped.

Because they are stored at room temperature and cannot be shaken once pooled, they must be used within 4 hours of preparation.

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