Although AABB guidelines are silent as to how blood product temperatures should be measured, virtually all commercially available chemical indicators have been calibrated to trigger based on core temperature. Essentially what they do is implement a color change at a preset temperature above 10 ºC in order to “simulate core”. This approach is very rudimentary and makes a lot of assumptions about the conditions and environment around the blood product. In addition to this they are also susceptible to false positives, which may contribute to inappropriate wastage.


In Section 1(a) of this report¹ from the Advisory Committee on Blood Components core temperature is referred to as the requirement for storage conditions in the UK and Europe.

The current requirement in the UK and Europe is that red cell components must be stored with their core temperature in the range 2-6 °C, whereas AABB Standards state 1-6 ºC. Exceptionally, it is allowed that the core temperature may extend from 1 to 10 ºC, providing that this deviation has happened on one occasion only, and that the duration is no longer than five hours.

Industry Standard

Nearly all the major manufacturers of chemical indicators for blood products claim to measure core temperature.

Safe-T-Vue® by Temptime®

Safe-T-Vue has correlated temperature indication to core blood bag temperature supported by over 20,000 test data results that quantitatively support the consistency, predictability and repeatability of its indicator performance.

Blood Temp 6 by Timestrip®

With the push of a button, Blood Temp 6 is activated and indicates simply and clearly if the core temperature of the blood has risen above the threshold temperature.

HemoTemp® II by Biosynergy, Inc.

The reversible portion of the indicator gives a continuous temperature monitoring, allowing for an easy to read "core" temperature of the unit.

Hemo-Trac™ by Fisherbrand™

Once activated by push of a button, it will instantly begin monitoring core temperature of each blood bag.

ShockWatch® by Shockwatch Pty Ltd®

The Blood Temp temperature indicator has been specifically designed to monitor the core temperature of a blood bag.

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