Instead of collecting a unit (about a pint) of your blood as a whole, donations can be made for only the component that is needed most by local patients. These donations are made through an automated process known as apheresis. This process collects whole blood from the donor, isolates the needed component, then returns the remaining components along with a saline solution back to the donor.
Determining what component is best for you to donate – and how you can impact a very special patient in need – begins with your blood type.
APHERESIS DONATION TYPES
Double Red Cells
Red cells carry oxygen throughout the body and are needed for hospital patients who may have experienced a loss of blood due to surgery or a car accident, or a patient suffering from anemia.
Though a whole-blood donation can be used to treat these patients, typically only the red cells are needed. Eligible donors are encouraged to give a double-red cell (or “Power Red”) donation.
What is a Power Red Donation?
A Power Red donation is 2 units of collected red blood cells as opposed to a single unit taken during a whole-blood donation.
A Red Cell of Power Red Donation is the ideal donation for:
O positive, O negative, B negative blood types
Platelets are yellow in color and the clotting agents in our blood. When we are cut, platelets are essential to help minimize bleeding. Patients being treated for blood diseases, including cancer, often need frequent platelet transfusions as treatment for the disease can reduce platelet count.
A Platelet Donation
Depending on the donor, platelets can be given in a single, double or triple unit. Platelets also are rich with plasma which works closely with platelets to stop bleeding.
A Platelet donation is the ideal donation for:
A positive, A negative, B positive and B negative blood types.
Plasma is a yellowish fluid that makes up more than one-half our total blood volume. Plasma is mostly water, but also contains proteins and many other important ingredients the body needs.
Like platelets, plasma’s most important job is to help stop bleeding. Plasma is vital for hospital personnel to have on hand in order to treat burn victims and patients battling cancer.
A Plasma Donation
Similar to platelets, plasma can be donated in single or multiple units. Plasma is a crucial component to healing; the more you can give, the greater the impact on a patient who needs it.
A Plasma donation is the ideal donation for:
AB positive and AB negative blood types.