Noninvasive pH monitoring of platelet concentrates: a large field test
Address reprint requests to: Effimia Gkoumassi, Department Transfusion Monitoring, Sanquin Research, PO Box 1191, 9701 BD Groningen, the Netherlands; e-mail: E.Gkoumassi@gmail.com.
Developing new quality control methods for platelet concentrates (PCs) can contribute to increasing transfusion safety and efficiency. The aim of this study was to investigate in a large field test the quality of expired PCs and whether 100% noninvasive pH monitoring can be used to predict PC quality.
Study Design and Methods
The pH of 13,693 PCs produced for transfusion was monitored daily using Blood Storage, Inc.'s pH sterile, automated fluoroscopic evaluation technology. Upon indication of compromised quality or expiration, PCs were returned and in vitro tests were performed.
A total of 998 PCs were returned, of which 962 outdated, 26 had a positive BacT/ALERT reaction, seven had aggregates, one was without swirl, one had low pH, and one had high pH. BacT/ALERT was faster in identifying bacterial contamination than pH measurements. The pH at the end of the storage period was significantly lower than at the beginning. In vitro tests indicated that while the PC quality was acceptable upon expiration, it rapidly declined after expiration.
In this setting where the vast majority of PCs were of good quality and within acceptable pH limits, daily, noninvasive routine pH measurement has limited added value in identifying quality-compromised PCs.