Transfusion of blood products can results in circulatory overload if the amount or rate of infused products exceeds the body's capacity for handling the influx.


Respiratory findings:

(1) dyspnea

(2) orthopnea

(3) cyanosis

(4) pulmonary edema with rales

(5) chest tightness


Cardiovascular findings:

(1) tachycardia

(2) elevated blood pressure


Other findings:

(1) pedal or dependent edema

(2) headache


Patients at risk:

(1) age extremes (very young and adults > 60 years of age)

(2) cardiac disease, especially heart failure

(3) renal failure

(4) large volume of infused fluids

(5) severe anemia (hemoglobin < 6 g/dL)


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