Are there alternatives to blood transfusions?

Alternatives to blood transfusions exist but may not work in all situations. Medications can help your body produce blood. But if you’ve lost too much blood or your life is in danger, you’ll likely need a transfusion. The alternatives won’t help quickly enough.

Can I refuse to receive a blood transfusion?

You can refuse a transfusion, but you should know the risks and consequences. You’ll need to discuss this option with your healthcare provider. If you choose to refuse the transfusion, you could face permanent disability or loss of life.

A note from Cleveland Clinic

Blood transfusions may worry people or make them feel anxious. But healthcare providers work hard to ensure the safety of these treatments. They take steps to protect you -- from screening donors to making sure to use the right blood. Transfusions work well when people need them. If you’re unsure about receiving a transfusion, talk to your healthcare provider.

Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy