Did I receive blood donations for my surgery?

I know this is weird.

I love donating blood and have wondered if I got some donations myself.

I had temporal lobectomy, meaning they were cutting out part of my brain. Does that bleed a bunch and require more?

Again, I know this is weird but this is the place for it.

What did the bill say?

I found this at brain-surgery.com: “Bleeding is almost never a problem for the brain surgeon. The need for blood transfusions has been almost eliminated, except for certain vascular lesions (e.g. brain aneurysms and certain rare tumors).”

^ This.

If you know well ahead of time that you need to have surgery, you may be able to donate your own blood for it: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Autotransplantation#Autologous_blood_donation

This sounds like blood transfusions used to be common for brain surgery. I wonder what changed?

I’m guessing that they are using much less invasive techniques. Head wounds bleed a lot so if they had to open a big hole there would probably have been a lot of blood loss.

How would he know?
Usually, the detailed bill goes to the insurance company, and about all the patient knows is what their co-pays are. They seldom get a bill that lists the service details at all.

Ah, that would make sense.

By the way, I would have thought the doctor would notify the patient if they had blood transfusion. Isn’t that something the patient would need to keep track of as a risk factor? E.g. if they later have symptoms for an infection that may be transmitted by blood transfusion?

When I had my surgery, we got a copy of the itemized bill. My wife then compared it line by line to what the Insurance company paid, so that we could dispute any problems (of which there were many).

Same when we got the bill for my brain surgery.

Where do you think the hospital gets blood, if not from donations? The blood factory of small children grown from the leftover test tube embryos?

I think the OP is asking whether he likely received a blood transfusion.

That’s a funny way of asking that.

Ok. Lots here.

I haven’t looked through all the bill stuff because my insurance was already maxed this year and my wife handles the finances. What I’ve seen wasn’t that specific, but could have been the wrong thing.

I don’t recall being talked to about it, but I won’t be surprised if they have my blood type. They have looked at my blood plenty of times in the past for various things.

I never heard anything at the hospital about it so maybe blood isn’t an issue. Huh. Cool.

I had triple bypass surgery 18 years ago and I specifically asked them how much blood I needed. None. Pretty impressive.


I’d get the medical record. I had a family member get Hepatitis C from transfusions she didn’t know she had received.

For this, and some other bloody procedures, they use a device called “Cell Saver” that sucks up shed blood, filters it, and re-infuses it. They only hang blood if two or more units are needed.

More on that: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intraoperative_blood_salvage