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Authors expose their experience with autotransfusion, made during several years in a general surgery university department .Discussion is made about ethic and economical aspect of the philosophy guiding the most general concept of blood sparing, and different methods of autotransfusion; attention is then focused on practical experience made during two years (1995-1997) when the program worked well. On the whole, in 94 patients, 172 blood units were collected plus 10 plasma units obtained by aferesis. No method-related complications are have been observed. Elements who corresponded to difficulties or obstacles to the fully application of the method have been critically analyzed. Authors propose finally guide-lines which want to be valid proposal to increase method use while respecting at the best ethics, economics, efficacy and efficiency that must guide our work.