Erythropoietin in Critical Illness and Trauma
Critical Care Clinics | W B SAUNDERS CO-ELSEVIER INC | Published : 2019
Erythropoietin (EPO) is a 34kD pleiotropic cytokine that was first identified as being essential for red blood cell (RBC) production. It is now recognized however that EPO is produced by many tissues. It plays a key role in the modulation of the response to injury, inflammation, and tissue hypoxia via the inhibition of apoptosis. Large clinical trials in the critically ill failed to demonstrate a role for EPO as an RBC transfusion sparing agent; however, improved clinical outcomes, attributable to EPO role in tissue protection are observed in critically ill trauma patients. Further research to confirm or refute these observations is required.