MCG brings "bloodless medicine" to the CSRA

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September 7, 2006

It's called bloodless medicine, and MCG is the only local hospital that offers it.

You don't have to use a donor, and you may not have to use your own blood.

"I knew in time I would have to have some type of surgery," Waynesboro resident Cheryl Jurceka told News 12. She's making a speedy recovery.

She's still using a cane after her back surgery 5 weeks ago, but other than that, you wouldn't know what she's been through.

"Very difficult to walk, to sit, to sleep, just function," she said, describing symptoms similar to those her mother had just 13 years ago when she had surgery.

But after her mother's long, difficult recovery, Cheryl took a different route to get better.

It's called bloodless medicine, and it involves using a variety of techniques and equipment to decrease the need for a blood donor.

"Blood transfusions, when it comes to contracting diseases, there are very low risks, but still there are chances, and patients are aware of that," Walter Quiller, Jr., a registered nurse with the MCG Bloodless Medicine Program, told News 12.

That's just one of the reasons Cheryl chose the program at mcg.

Not only did she get better more quickly, but she also helped people she didn't even know, who really need the blood.

"Some of them have acute medical emergencies," said Dr. Lloyd Cook of MCG's Department of Pathology. "Some of them have to use the blood we have on hand."

There's been a 33% increase in participants in the program since it started about two years ago. Now doctors see up to 40 new patients a month.

And with a machine called the cell saver, if needed, Cheryl could have used her own blood, washed and filtered.

She didn't have to...nor does she have to endure the pain she once did.

"Now I'm able to sit on my porch, walk around my house," she said.

If you're interested in learning more, a free seminar is coming up. It features speakers and demonstrations of medical-surgical techniques used in bloodless medicine.

"Transfusion Alternatives" Seminar
Saturday, September 23rd
1PM - 4PM
MCG Alumni Center
919 15th Street