Background: The dedicated devices for blood irradiation are available only at a few centers in developing countries thus the irradiation remains a service with limited availability due to prohibitive cost. Objective: To implement a blood irradiation program at our center using linear accelerator. Materials and methods: The study is performed detailing the specific operational and quality assurance measures employed in providing a blood component-irradiation service at tertiary care hospital. X-rays generated from linear accelerator were used to irradiate the blood components. To facilitate and standardize the blood component irradiation, a blood irradiator box was designed and fabricated in acrylic. Using Elekta Precise Linear Accelerator, a dose of 25. Gy was delivered at the centre of the irradiation box. Standardization was done using five units of blood obtained from healthy voluntary blood donors. Each unit was divided to two parts. One aliquot was subjected to irradiation. Biochemical and hematological parameters were analyzed on various days of storage. Cost incurred was analyzed. Results: Progressive increase in plasma hemoglobin, potassium and lactate dehydrogenase was noted in the irradiated units but all the parameters were within the acceptable range indicating the suitability of the product for transfusion. The irradiation process was completed in less than 30. min. Validation of the radiation dose done using TLD showed less than ±3% variation. Conclusion: This study shows that that the blood component irradiation is within the scope of most of the hospitals in developing countries even in the absence of dedicated blood irradiators at affordable cost.
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