Pheresis is a treatment done to remove a harmful substance that is causing swelling in one or more of your child’s organs. Pheresis is used to remove:
- Excess white blood cells, as in leukemia
- Misshapen red blood cells, as in sickle cell disease
- Extra red blood cells
These disorders may cause organ dysfunction or pain in your child. Pheresis is done to help treat these problems.
Your child will have an IV or a plastic tube, called a catheter, placed in a large vein. The pheresis machine attaches to the catheter or IV and removes the blood, cleans it, and returns the “good” blood back to your child.