Platelets Unplugged: The Sticky Truth – An ICTMG/AABB podcast

Wednesday, October 26, 2016 Jenny Ryan

'Platelets Unplugged', co-produced with the AABB​, is the first in a series of podcasts digging into best practice for the transfusion medicine community and health-care professionals.

The International Collaboration for Transfusion Medicine Guidelines – aka ICTMG – has been busy building more than leading practices over the last year.

Established in 2011, the ICTMG is a group of specialists comprising hematologists, physicians and methodologists from a variety of countries who work together to establish evidence-based transfusion medicine guidelines. Their goal is to create and promote these guidelines to optimize transfusion care around the globe.

Canadian Blood Services is proud to support the activities of the ICTMG. Through the Centre for Innovation, we provide administrative support to this international group that includes a healthy contingent of Canadian experts.  

This year, in addition to launching a new website to host, collect and share resources, the ICTMG produced (in collaboration with the AABB), a new English-language podcast titled “Platelets Unplugged: The Sticky Truth”. It was developed for the international transfusion-medicine community and health-care providers who may need to provide platelet transfusions.

This podcast is a co-production of the AABB and the ICTMG

This three-part podcast peels back the layers of two new platelet transfusion guidelines recently published by the AABB and ICTMG. Sunnybrook Hospital’s Dr. Richard Wells, moderates a lively discussion with Dr. Richard Kaufmann of the AABB (formerly the American Association of Blood Banks) and Dr. Susan Nahirniak representing the ICTMG.

It provides listeners with knowledge of the two platelet guidelines and their respective recommendations and talks about how these evidence-based recommendations were generated, the commonalities and differences between guidelines, and areas of needed and ongoing research.


  • Podcast – Part 1 (Approx. 17 minutes) 
    An overview of the AABB and ICTMG organizations, the platelet guidelines and how they were developed, and a discussion around dosing.
  • Podcast – Part 2 (Approx. 10 minutes) 
    Our experts discuss prevention of minor versus major bleeding, differences in in-patient versus outpatient treatments, the use of red blood cells to stop bleeding, gaps in current knowledge and future areas of investigation.
  • Podcast – Part 3 (Approx. 16 minutes) 
    New data and evidence emerging since the guidelines were released are considered and a discussion of findings from the PATCH study, as well as case by case considerations. Lastly, our experts answer some questions from the international community.


The Moderator

Dr. Richard Wells is a Haematologist with Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, a scientist, biological sciences, Odette Cancer Research Program at the Sunnybrook Research Institute; co-director, myelodysplastic syndromes program, Odette Cancer Centre; and assistant professor, Department of Medical Biophysics, at the University of Toronto. He is also a medical advisor to the Aplastic Anemia and Myelodysplasia Association of Canada.

The speakers:

Dr. Richard Kaufmann (AABB)

Dr. Kaufmann is the medical director of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital Adult Transfusion Service, and an associate professor of pathology at Harvard Medical School. He has pursued a variety of clinical research interests in the field of transfusion medicine, and he led the panel that developed the AABB platelet transfusion guideline.

Dr. Susan Nahirniak (ICTMG)

Dr. Nahirniak is a Transfusion Medicine physician and hematopathologist who currently serves as Alberta Health Service’s Section Chief for Transfusion Medicine Service and the Laboratory Medicine & Pathology deputy clinical department head in the Edmonton Zone.  She is a professor in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Alberta.  She has been involved with Canada’s National Advisory Committee on Blood and Blood Products and the ICTMG since their inceptions.

These podcasts are based on the following Guidelines:

Stay tuned for more ICTMG podcasts coming soon. 


About the AABB

The AABB is an international, not-for-profit association the field of transfusion medicine and cellular therapies. It’s committed to improving health by developing and delivering standards, accreditation and educational programs that focus on optimizing patient and donor care and safety.

About the ICTMG

The ICTMG - International Collaboration for Transfusion Medicine Guidelines is a group comprising hematologists, physicians and methodologists from a variety of countries who work together to establish evidence-based transfusion medicine guidelines to optimize transfusion care.




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