Fresh frozen plasma – why every practice should keep a bag in the freezer
Suspected rodenticide poisoning is a common presentation to primary care practices and is the second most common reason for seeking advice from the Veterinary Poisons Information Service. Keeping a unit of fresh frozen plasma (FFP) in the practice makes practical and commercial sense allowing rapid treatment of such cases as well as other coagulopathies, post surgical bleeding and dysproteinaemias where appropriate. In many situations, plasma is a better choice than fresh whole blood not least as significant adverse reactions are rare. Furthermore FFP has a one year shelf-life and subsequent availability as frozen plasma (FP) for another 4 years means that likelihood of a unit being discarded is very low.
This article reviews the indications for using FFP and FP and provides answers to common questions about the use of plasma as well as providing a practical guide for its administration. Like many newer therapies, having FFP readily available in the practice will mean that it is used more frequently and in a more timely manner improving outcome for patients.
All our Tutored Online CPD Courses are written and taught by an expert in the relevant field. The tutor for this course is:
Dr Kit Sturgess MA, VetMB, PhD, CertVR, DSAM, CertVC, FRCVS RCVS Recognised Specialist in Small Animal Medicine Advanced Practitioner in Veterinary Cardiology