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Give Blood. It may save a life...YOURS!

Give Blood. It may save a life...YOURS!

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Old Sep 8, 06, 1:55 pm
  #121  
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Originally Posted by exerda
CNN is now saying the feds are fining the Red Cross $4.2 million for not always asking the questions and potentially not always doing all tests on blood.

What annoyed me is when the Red Cross went from letting you answer the questions yourself to having the nurse ask them all to you (presumably to ensure people pay attention to them). For those who give blood frequently, it's really annoying to have to say, "No, no, no, no, no," to each one. It's even more annoying to have to have them look up the same code each time for OK'ing foreign travel to non-CJD, non-malarial regions. I'm often tempted to just lie on that question to avoid the hassle.
My pre-donation interview often takes half an hour or more as they look up all the countries I've visited and then look at the cities in some cases. No history is kept, so every interview is always entertaining.

I should just bring my passport and point to the relevant stamps.
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Old Nov 5, 06, 7:16 pm
  #122  
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Remember to vote before/after you donate a pint.

dh
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Old Jan 29, 07, 10:52 pm
  #123  
 
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So I made a unplanned donation at the blood bank (01/29/2007) (the Goodyear shop next door was checking my tires). I was overdue for a donation anyway since they've been emailing me to remind to donate again.

Anyway - as I am giving whole blood I see a note that talks about Apheresis. Anyone donate with this method? What's the difference? Is it any better to donate Aspheresis versus whole blood?
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Old Jan 30, 07, 1:34 am
  #124  
 
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Originally Posted by bowdenj View Post
Anyone donate with this method?
Yes, I do.
Originally Posted by bowdenj View Post
What's the difference?
Apheresis donations take a lot longer. From the time I start filling out the form until I've had my last donut at the canteen is usually about 2.5 to 3 hrs. (whole blood donations generally take about an hour). For the apheresis donation they hook you up to a machine that draws your blood out, extracts components(Platelets, red cells, plasma or some combination thereof) then returns your blood into your body.
Originally Posted by bowdenj View Post
Is it any better to donate Aspheresis versus whole blood?
Because the blood is returned to your circulatory system, your body can regenerate the missing components faster than replacing replacing a pint of whole blood. Therefore, you can donate more often (every 2 weeks for apherisis vs 8 weeks for whole blood) resulting over time in a much larger net to the blood bank.
If you can afford the time, the potential is there to help a lot more people by donating more often.
Plus, you can reach "elite status" in your blood banks donor program faster.

PS-
The nurse at my blood bank told me that:
If everybody that is eligble to donate blood were to donate just once each year, there would never be another blood shortage!
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Old Mar 3, 07, 12:17 pm
  #125  
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While you're doing your spring cleaning, don't forget to donate a pint.

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Old Mar 3, 07, 12:19 pm
  #126  
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Originally Posted by dhammer53 View Post
While you're doing your spring cleaning, don't forget to donate a pint.

dh
No.
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Old Mar 3, 07, 12:50 pm
  #127  
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I did a double donation this week. This was the first time I did this.

The process took a little longer since they had to collect 2 units of fluid and then return one unit of fluid without the red blood cells. The anti-coagulent felt a little weird (cool, numbing sensation to arm and face) but overall, not too bad at all.

I will be deferred for another year when I return to India so I'm glad I was able to help out while I still could.
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Old Mar 3, 07, 2:06 pm
  #128  
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thank you!

Originally Posted by Spiff View Post
I did a double donation this week. This was the first time I did this.

The process took a little longer since they had to collect 2 units of fluid and then return one unit of fluid without the red blood cells. The anti-coagulent felt a little weird (cool, numbing sensation to arm and face) but overall, not too bad at all.

I will be deferred for another year when I return to India so I'm glad I was able to help out while I still could.
I'm not allowed to donate, so I am grateful to those who can and do.
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Old Mar 3, 07, 4:26 pm
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I'm not allowed to donate, so I figure they don't really need blood all that much.
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Old Mar 3, 07, 6:01 pm
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Originally Posted by robb View Post
I'm not allowed to donate, so I figure they don't really need blood all that much.
Neither am I.

A man who had protected sex with a man just once since 1977 can't give blood. A man who had unprotected sex with10 girls in the last month can.

So forgive me if I hear the red cross talk about the blood shortage and fail to feel sorry. If I know I have a surgery coming up I start donating for myself, but that's it.
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Old Mar 3, 07, 8:04 pm
  #131  
 
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Yes, I think these "shortages" are manufactured to periodically drum up donations, just to create a sense of urgency around a campaign. If there were actually any remote threat of a real shortage in our blood supply, then they'd stop wasting and turning away donations.
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Old Mar 3, 07, 10:08 pm
  #132  
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It has been suggested that I not donate either. As a potential recipient I cannot fault their reasoning, even if it is ultimately misplaced.

Given the number of people who donate against medical recommendation, I will use autologous transfusions if I have the time to prepare for it.

So I contribute elsewhere, as I can.

Those of you who can and do donate have my respect.
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Old Mar 4, 07, 8:25 am
  #133  
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Thank you Donors

Well, it's rare that I get to address large numbers of anonymous people on this subject, so I will. On behalf of myself and my family, allow me to thank all of you donors out there.

My son is one of those people with leukemia that PHLBuddy is referring to. He was diagnosed over 3 years ago in January, and is a few months away from end of treatment.

Over the course of his treatment, his life has been saved by the anonymous donors of the 20+ transfusions he has had, of red blood cells and platelets.

So, on behalf of all those who have really needed it, I thank you. Please keep donating.






Originally Posted by PHLbuddy View Post
Dear Colleagues,

As someone who deals with patients suffering from leukemias, lymphomas, and other blood-related cancers, I can tell you your donations of blood products are vitally important. Thank you so much for taking the time to volunteer.

I cannot tell you the number of patients whose lives have been saved - almost single-handedly - by platelets, plasma, and red blood cells obtained through volunteer donations.

For those of you who enjoy donating and have no ill effects, please consider contacting the local red cross (or your major cancer centers) to donote platelets. These are truly the life saving products for many cancer patients.

Also, we are in urgent need of donors to the National Bone Marrow Donor Program. By adding a tube which contains a few teaspoonsful of blood to your donation, your HLA typing will be placed in a national registry for cancer patients who require life-save bone marrow transplants. More information can be found here. Folks of minority and multiple ethnic groups are especially encouraged to apply.
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Old Apr 1, 07, 1:23 am
  #134  
 
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As a gay person, with Leukemia, who needs blood, I'd have to say that I'd rather people speak out against the need for changes in donation criteria, while at the still time donating blood. Boycotting by not donating puts lives at risk, and while that might seem like a worthwhile risk to you, it isn't to me.

Originally Posted by robb View Post
They continue to defer people for ridiculous reasons, several of which have been noted here. Therefore, I assume they don't really need any blood, so don't bother.
Originally Posted by robb View Post
Nope, I'm serious. Even the military drags out kicking out the homosexuals when they need them. The blood banks must be doing fine and not need any blood if they are going to turn away so many people for arbitrary reasons. I don't support blood drives.
Originally Posted by robb View Post
Yes, I think these "shortages" are manufactured to periodically drum up donations, just to create a sense of urgency around a campaign. If there were actually any remote threat of a real shortage in our blood supply, then they'd stop wasting and turning away donations.

Then you've obviously never had to go home, and come back the next day, because of a low hemoglobin, because they didn't have enough blood in stock at the hospital. They often keep rarer types at centralized blood banks, and distribute them on an as needed basis.

I've personally had to have around 30 RBC and Platelet transfusions since I was diagnosed at the beginning of December. I can't begin to express my gratitude for the people that gave their time, and a day or two of energy to help save my life.
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Old Apr 1, 07, 3:23 am
  #135  
 
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So, your suggestion is that I lie and evade the blood bank's screening system?

I do not boycott donating blood, I am prohibited from doing so.

As for speaking out for the need for changes in donation criteria, I thought that was what I was doing. I honestly believe that there are many people who read this thread who had no idea that gay and bisexual men are prohibited from donating blood of any type, and they need to be informed.

I'm truly sorry for your situation, and I will reconsider my approach in light of the supply of rare blood types (although, I have an honest question: Are you describing an actual shortage or just the effects of a logistical problem regarding rare blood types? More precisely, are you turned away because the central blood bank was short or because the hospital didn't order properly for your appointment?).

However, regarding the overall blood supply, I do believe everything you quoted me as saying. I believe if a systemic crisis existed, then we'd see this problem solved once for and all. If they kept this discriminatory system in place in the face of real shortages, then I wouldn't know how to describe that kind of evil. Of course, given the opposition to stem cell research that could also save your life, I probably should adjust my thinking to accept that possibility.

Good luck on beating this.
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