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 Blood Bank

The Blood Bank is situated in a spacious area with all facilities for collection from the donors, testing, componenting and storage facilities.

In case you are willing to donate on short notice, in emergencies, inform the blood bank of the same so that they can contact you during the emergency.
Similarly if you are having a rare blood group, inform the blood bank of your interest to donate whenever the need arises.

What is Blood ?

Blood supplies to every cell of the body oxygen and nutrients, and carries away the waste products. It also plays a central role in the body’s defense mechanism and is an indicator of a person’s health condition. Blood is pumped by the heart through a network of miles of blood vessels to every part of the body. An average adult has about 5 to 6 liters of blood. It moves at a speed of about a foot per second completing a circulation in about 20 seconds. Blood is composed of a clear yellow fluid, the plasma and other elements. These elements include the Red blood cells (erythrocytes) : These carry Oxygen, White blood cells (leukocytes) : These fight infection, Platelets (thrombocytes) : These stop bleeding, proteins, electrolytes, hormones and glucose. the erythrocytes, leukocytes and platelets are described as formed elements of the blood. Together they compose about 50% of the total volume of blood.

Blood Grouping

The most common type of grouping is the ABO grouping. Red Blood Cells have a protein coat (called antigens) on their surface, which distinguishes them. According to this blood is divided into four groups:
A (A antigen is present), B (B antigen is present), AB (Both A and B antigens are present) and O (No antigens are present).
There are subtypes under this grouping (listed as A1, A2, A1B or A2B…) some of which are quite rare.
Apart from this there is another protein that plays an important part in the grouping of blood. This is called the Rh factor. If this is present, the particular blood type is called positive. If it is absent, it is called negative. Thus we have the following broad categories:

A Negative B Negative
A Positive B Positive
AB Negative O Negative
AB Positive O Positive
Origin of Blood

Blood is produced in the bone marrow, a jellylike substance inside the bones. In adults, the spine, ribs, and pelvis are the primary bones that make blood. As the blood cells develop from the stem cells in the marrow, they seep into the blood that passes through the bones and on into the bloodstream.
The lifespan of the different blood cells vary – red blood cells last about 120 days in the bloodstream; platelets about 10 days; and the various kinds of white blood cells can last from days to years. So when we donate we are in fact donating cells that are actually going to die in any case – something that we will not be having anyway and can be life-saving for to others.
The body has feedback systems that tell it when to make new blood cells. For example, if body oxygen levels are low, the kidneys produce a hormone called erythropoietin, which stimulates the stem cells in the marrow to produce more red blood cells.

Why donate Blood ?

Blood you donate is used to:

1. Replace blood loss during major surgeries
2. Help patients with blood disorders like haemophilia and Von Willebrand’s disease survive.
3. Raise hemoglobin levels (through transfusions) in patients with chronic ailments like severe anaemia, thalassemias, and cancer.
4. Replace blood lost during injury as in accidents.
5. Help burn patients receive plasma, that may be critical for their survival.
6. Blood donation not only makes a difference in terms of health to the patient, it also can help save the life of a patient.

Who Should not Donate Blood

1. Pregnant or lactating women, or those who have recently had an abortion.
2. Persons with multiple sexual partners or those who are addicted to drugs
3. Persons who have had an attack of infection like rubella, typhoid or malaria in the past few years.
4. People who have had jaundice after their 11th year.
5. Persons who have undergone surgery in the previous six months.
6. Persons who have consumed alcohol in the 24 hours prior to donation.
7. Women should avoid donation during their menstruating period.
8. Those who have taken various vaccinations in the recent past.
9. Persons with any systemic disease like heart disease, kidney disease, liver problems, blood disorders or asthma should not donate blood.
10. Persons suffering from infections transmitted through transfusions like HIV, Hepatitis, Syphilis etc should not donate blood.
11. Persons who are on steroids, hormonal supplements or certain specified medication such as antibiotics

Why should I donate blood ?

Nine good reasons why YOU SHOULD donate blood…

1. You will be someone’s hero — you may give a newborn, a child, a mother or a father, a brother or a sister another chance at life. In fact, you may help save up to three lives with just one donation.
2. You will walk a little taller afterwards — you will feel good about yourself.
3. It’s something you can spare — most people have blood to spare… yet, there is still not enough to go around.
4. Your bone marrow will be stimulated to produce new cells. Imagine going back in time when as a child your bone marrow was (and you were) most active and bubbling with energy.
5. It’s easy and convenient — it takes only about half an hour.
6. You will be helping to ensure that blood is there when you or someone close to you may need it.
7. It’s something you can do on equal footing with the rich and famous — blood is something money can’t buy. Only something one person can give to another.
8. The bandage on your arm after the donation will be your badge of honor.
9. And last but not the least ….It’s the right thing to do.

What happens to the blood I donate?

At SSSIHMS, fully automated ELISA processors are used for conducting the HIV and hepatitis tests. The blood is grouped and stored either as whole blood or as components like Packed red blood cells, plasma , platelets or cryoprecipitate. This is then issued to the patient after checking for compatibility with patients’ blood. The recently launched Column Agglutination Technique is being used at SSSIHMS blood bank to test for compatibility of donor’s blood with the patients.

Separating blood into components helps the patient as only that component which is therapeutically indicated is transfused. In short, it is a method to optimize blood utilization. The donor gets the satisfaction of being able to render help to more than 1 patient. The separation of blood is done in a closed system using a Temperature Regulated centrifuge and a Plasma Expressor under a Laminar flow.

Quick Stats on Blood Donation

1. An average person has 5-6 liters of blood in the body. Only about 7% of blood is taken at the time of donation.
2. In terms of volume the loss is corrected in 24-48 hours by the body. The red cell count is corrected in about 6-7 weeks.
3. The actual bleeding time is about 6-8 minutes. The bleeding is preceded by a pre-donation check up and you are advised some rest (for 10-15 minutes) and given some refreshment after donation. The whole process takes about half an hour.
4. The minimum time advised between two donations is 3 months. This gap is sufficient for the donor to regain the normal hemoglobin level.
5. Your health will not suffer because of the blood you have donated. In fact, it might help stimulate the bone marrow to produce new cells.
6. Precaution: Be sure that disposable needles are used for bleeding.
7. Precaution: You should have had a meal or a snack within 4 hours prior to donation.

Common Fears/Reasons for not donating blood

1. I don’t like/ am scared of needles/ I am afraid to give blood…
Nearly everyone feels that way in the beginning. However, most donors will tell you that you feel only a slight initial pinch, and 7-10 minutes later you are heading towards the refreshment room.
2. I am too busy…
The entire process takes about half an hour (the actual bleeding time is about 6 – 8 minutes). If only you realize that half an hour of yours would mean a lifetime for a premature baby, a healthy heart for a blue-baby, a spirited life for a patient with brain tumor who otherwise would have lived like a vegetable, the life of bread-earner of the family, or the destiny of the young mother, you might decide that you can make the time to donate the gift of life.
3. No-one ever asked me… not sure that my blood is needed…
Consider yourself asked! There is no other way to supply the blood needs of hospital patients but for the generous donations of people like you.
4. I already gave this year…
A normal adult can safely donate every 90 days. Many donors give 4 times a year!
5. I will get infected; can get AIDS…
A new sterile needle and bag are used for each donation. The needle is discarded immediately after donation. There is no way you could get infected during donation.
6. My blood isn’t the right type…
Every type of blood is needed. If you are having blood of a common group, there are many patients who need it. If your blood group is rare, there are fewer donors available to donate, so it is in short supply.
7. I don’t have blood to spare & I’ll feel weak later…
The average adult body has 5 – 6 litres of blood. Only 7% of this is collected during each donation. Doctors say that healthy adults may give regularly because the body quickly replaces the blood you donate. In volume, the blood is replaced within a few hours. After donation the normal daily activities can be continued.
8. I’m too old/ not fit for donation…
If you have any doubts, check with your physician or the staff of the blood bank. A great many medical conditions do not prevent you from donating blood, or may do so only temporarily.
9. I’ll wait for a special need…