Why should we donate blood?
Blood contains many life-saving components that can help to treat different illnesses and injuries. For many people, blood donors are their life-line. Blood donation gives a proud feeling of touching someone's life in such a beautiful way. It's an experience that no words can define. You have to donate blood yourself to find out. You also benefit in other ways by donating blood as it reduces the chances of ischemic heart diseases (beginning of heart problems) as frequent donations reduce the accumulated and unwanted iron load from the body. Your blood donation will also get you your blood insurance from us. By keeping the blood line flowing, you will greatly contribute towards a healthier, happier society. Do remember, any one may require blood any time including ourselves and our dear ones.
Is Donating Blood Safe?
Blood donation takes only about 45 minutes and it is a safe procedure. In general, blood donation, whether whole blood or aphaeresis does not usually have significant adverse effects on a donor's health. Donors give about 10-12% of their circulating blood volume during each blood donation. Healthy adult donors who meet the required screening criteria should be able to donate safely and regularly. If you ask any regular blood donor about it, a small percentage of first time donors may psychologically feel a little dizzy but only for a few minutes. The Doctors staff at the blood drive will ensure that your first blood donation is a happy experience.
Can I get any disease like AIDS or Hepatitis or any other disease by Blood donation?
That is impossible. We use only brand new, sterile, disposable needles for each and every donor. These needles are discarded after each use. Donors can therefore never catch any infectious diseases from blood donation. This totally eliminates any remote chance of catching any disease from blood donation.
How much Blood and how often can I donate?
You can donate blood every 12 weeks, up to 4 times a year. Eligible donors (any body between 18 to 60 years of age and leading a healthy life) with weight above 50 kgs. can donate up to 450 ml of blood. Your body can replenish this volume within 24 hours.
How frequently can I donate Blood?
Males — Every 3 months.
Females — Every 4 months.
Why should I become a regular blood donor?
As you know, blood is a life saving medicine, which works wonders in certain medical treatments, and life threatening situations. Our society is today threatened by scarcity of blood and the only blood source today is human being. This issue has got further complexes by professional donors, who donate blood for money. These donors have contributed towards rapid spread of killer diseases like AIDS, Hepatitis B & Hepatitis C in the society. Your regular donation will go a long way in salvaging the situation.
What Types of Blood Donation are There?
General Blood Donation
450-mL, or less than 1 pint, of whole blood is collected from each donor in a plastic bag that contains an anticoagulant preservative.
Apheresis Component Donation
Apheresis is a specialized form of blood donation in which only one specific blood component (platelets, plasma or red cells) are extracted from the donor. It is slightly more physically demanding than a whole blood donation. The process is also longer, about 45 to 90 minutes.
Donate Blood Plasma can be carried on very casually. After donating the blood you can even go for work. The blood volume or plasma is replaced within a day. Four to eight weeks are needed for complete replacement of the red cells.
Common Reasons for Postponing Your Donation
You should postpone your donation as required, if any of these apply to you:
1 week deferral:
Upper respiratory tract infections such as cold, flu or sore throat. Please wait at least 1 week after symptoms have been resolved before donating;
2 weeks' deferral:
Contact with Chikungunya fever patients;
Travel to Chikungunya fever risk areas.
6 months' deferral:
Chickenpox, Measles or Mumps infection;
Tooth extraction (for wisdom tooth extraction surgery, wait 3 months);
3 weeks' deferral:
Contact with Measles, Mumps or Dengue.
3 years' deferral:
4 weeks' deferral:
Maloprim, Fansidar or Mefloquine ingestion;
Measles, Mumps or Rubella vaccination;
Yellow Fever vaccination;
Oral Polio ingestion;
Chickenpox exposure (NOT infection);
12 months' deferral:
Donors who have had close contact with a person with Hepatitis B. Close contact is understood to mean living in the same household as or coming into contact with the carrier's bodily fluids / secretions;
Ear/body piercing or acupuncture under non-sterile conditions (if a disposable needle is used, donors need not defer their donations);
Received blood transfusion; or
1 day deferral:
Dental work e.g. scaling or filing;
2 days' deferral:
Tetanus toxoid vaccination;
Hepatitis B vaccination;
3 days' deferral:
Most prescription medication (excluding paracetamol, anti-histamines or sedatives provided they are not taken for fever/flu/illness), eg. Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDS) like Diclofenac, Ibuprofen, Indomethacin, Ketoprofen, Mefenamic acid, Naproxen; or Aspirin (except if taken for heart disease, stroke & other medical conditions, which makes the donor ineligible for blood donation);
When Not to Donate Blood?
You should not give blood if you have:
- Autoimmune diseases such as SLE, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Thyrotoxicosis.
- Been infected by HIV or are at risk of getting HIV (e.g. have had sexual contact with a HIV-positive person, have multiple sex partners or patronized sex workers);
- Previous history of drug abuse (either oral or intravenous); or
- Serious chronic illnesses such as diseases of the heart or lung (those with well-controlled asthma can still donate blood).
- Ever had Hepatitis B or C;
- Previous or current history of cancer.
What is the Criteria for Donating Blood?
Blood donors should be in good health and not suffer from any serious illness. It is very important to ensure that the act of donating blood does not jeopardize the donor's health in any way.
Safe blood is blood that does not contain viruses, bacteria, parasites, drugs or other injurious factors that may harm a blood recipient. Donated blood must also not harm the recipient. It must be safe for transfusion to those who need it.