Is there any restrictions in blood products in a food allergic individual? I have a patient going for surgery with a shellfish allergy. His father has donated blood and consumed shellfish on the day of donation. As long as they use washed packed red blood cells and not serum, I presume he should be fine. Would you mind weighing in?


The risk of an allergic reaction to blood products based upon passive transfer of food allergen from donor to patient is very low. A case report was published (1) in 2011 that described this occurring in a peanut allergic child. It raises the question of whether additional transfusion reactions may be due to this phenomenon, but again, the risk for your patient is very low and I would not suggest any specific precautions.

1) Jacobs, JFM, et al. Anaphylaxis from Passive Transfer of Peanut Allergen in a Blood Product, N Engl J Med 2011; 364:1981-1982

Hope this is helpful.

Daniel Jackson, MD FAAAAI


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