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Reminder of important clinical lesson
Aortic valve replacement in a Jehovah’s Witness: a case of multi-disciplinary clinical management for bloodless surgery
  1. John Jungpa Park1,
  2. Christopher C Lang2,
  3. Lynn Manson3,
  4. Edward T Brackenbury4
  1. 1University of Edinburgh Medical School, College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine, The University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK
  2. 2Department of Cardiology, Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK
  3. 3Department of Transfusion Medicine, Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK
  4. 4Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK
  1. Correspondence to Mr John Jungpa Park, j_park1088{at}


An 81-year-old female Jehovah’s Witness (JW) patient with severe aortic stenosis required aortic valve replacement (AVR). However, the patient’s religious beliefs precluded the use of primary blood components. Since the definitive treatment of AVR required bloodless open heart surgery, careful peri-operative plans were set forth by a multi-disciplinary team involving the cardiothoracic surgeon, haematologist and anaesthetist. The patient went on to successfully recover postoperatively. This case highlights: 1) The importance of carefully navigating through the most recent clinical and ethical protocol involved in the surgical management of JW’s. 2) The importance of preparing individually tailored pre, intra and postoperative plans that are delivered through a multi-disciplinary clinical team to ensure the best and safest possible outcomes.

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  • Competing interests None.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

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