Ref: CHB/HB/46/15                                                                            

BLOOD DONATION

Blood donation is a voluntary procedure. You agree to have blood drawn so that it can be given to someone who needs a blood transfusion. Millions of people need blood transfusions each year. Some may need blood during surgery. Others depend on it after an accident or because they have a disease that requires blood components. Blood donation makes all of this possible.

There are several types of blood donation:

  • Whole blood. This is the most common type of blood donation, during which approximately a pint of whole blood is donated. The blood is then separated into its components — red cells, plasma, platelets.
  • Platelets. This type of donation uses a process called aphaeresis. During aphaeresis, the donor is hooked up to a machine that collects the platelets and some of the plasma, and then returns the rest of the blood to the donor.
  • Plasma. Plasma may be collected simultaneously with a platelet donation, or it may be collected without collecting platelets during an aphaeresis donation.
  • Double red cells. Double red cell donation is also done using aphaeresis. In this case, only the red cells are collected.

Who can Donate Blood?
One is eligible to donate blood if they are in good health, weigh at least 50 kg and are 17 years or older.

Basic Eligibility Guidelines:-

  • Age: - You must be 17 years old or older to donate to the general blood supply.
  • High Blood Pressure: - Acceptable as long as your blood pressure is below 180 systolic (First Number) and below 100 diastolic (second number) at the time of donation.
  • Body Piercing: - People must not donate if they have had a tongue, nose, belly button piercing in the past 12 months (donors with pierced ears are eligible).
  • Cold & Flu: - Wait if you have fever or a productive cough (bringing up phlegm). Wait if you do not feel well on the day of donation. Wait until you have completed antibiotic treatment for sinus, throat or lung infection.
  • Diabetes: - Acceptable as long as it is well controlled, whether medication is taken or not.
  • Diets: - A meal is recommended at least four (4) hour before donating. Drink plenty of fluids.
  • Tattoos: - One year deferral.
  • Weight: - You must weigh at least 50 kg to be eligible for blood donation for your own safety.

Health Benefits of Donating Blood:-

  • They Joy of Saving Human Lives: - The blood you donate is divided into various components according to the needs of patients. Every time you donate blood, you help up to 3 or 4 individual’s recipients.
  • Free Health Check-up: - Before every blood donation process, a series of health check-ups are performed on the donor totally free of cost. Further, after the blood is donated, the blood and blood products that are derived from them are screened for certain infections, and you can choose to be informed if they find any abnormality.
  • Reduces Risk of Heart Disease: - Regular blood donations help to keep the levels of iron in the body in-check, especially in males. This has shown to reduce heart disease.
  • Burns Calories: - One time blood donation helps you shed 650 Kcal. This can aid you in your body weight control measures. However, blood can be donated safely once in three months and not more frequently. 
  • Reduces the risk of Cancer: - Donating blood frequently will reduce the risk of cancers. More research is going on to find strong evidence.

Myths:-

  1. I can't give blood because I have seasonal allergies.  Allergies, even those that need to be controlled by medication, will not prevent you from donating blood.
  2. I can't give blood because I have high blood pressure.  As long as your blood pressure is below 180 systolic (first number) and 100 diastolic (second number) at the time of your donation, you may give blood. Furthermore, medications that you may be taking for high blood pressure do not disqualify you from donating.
  3. I can't give blood because I have high cholesterol.  A high cholesterol level does not disqualify you from donating-even if medication is used to control it.
  4. I can't give blood because I had cancer.  While some types of cancer may disqualify you from donating, there are many circumstances under which you may donate blood after an appropriate waiting period.
  5. I can't give blood because I'm diabetic.  Diabetics may donate blood as long as the other medical requirements are met. However, the use of bovine-derived insulin will result in deferral from blood donation
  6. I can't give blood because I have epilepsy or seizures.  Epilepsy or seizures do not disqualify you from donating as long as you have had no seizures for one year.
  7. I can't donate because I'm anemic.  Your hemoglobin (iron) level will be checked prior to donating blood. As long as levels are normal on the day of donation, you may give.
  8. I can't give blood because I'm on medication.  In nearly all cases, medications will not disqualify you as a blood donor. As long as you are healthy and the condition is under control, you will very likely be able to donate.
  9. I can't give blood because I'm afraid of needles.  Most people do feel a bit of nervousness about blood donation. Most also say after their donation that they're sorry they waited so long. Blood donation is a momentary discomfort for the donor that can provide a lifetime of a difference for the patient.



After Donating Blood:-

  • Drink an extra four (8 ounce) glasses of liquids.
  • Keep the strip bandage on for the next several hours to avoid a skin rash, clean the area around the strip bandage with soap and water.
  • Do not do any heavy lifting or vigorous exercise for the rest of the day.
  • If the needle site starts to bleed, apply pressure to it and raise your arm straight up for about 5-10 minutes or until bleeding stops.
  • If you experience dizziness or lightheadedness after donation, stop what you are doing and sit or lie down until you feel better.
  • Avoid performing any activity where fainting may lead to injury for at least 24 hours.
  • Eat foods that have a lot of iron, such as lean red meat, raisins & beans.





 

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