8 main questions about blood donation, the answers to which it is useful to know everyone
April 20 – All-Russian Day of the donor. Blood transfusion is a procedure that is used by modern medicine as the only alternative method of treating various diseases and saving lives after severe blood loss. Thus, during the war years, the wounded were saved, and in modern medicine, heavy patients, such as cancer patients, who need to restore hemoglobin, red blood cells and platelets after undergoing chemotherapy, are rehabilitated. How is donation arranged in Russia, who can become a donor and how blood is stored – in the material of Olga Galkina.1. When did organized donation appear in Russia
In this sense, the 20th century can be considered the period of development of donation in Russia as such and the time of the formation of the blood service. For the first time, the process of blood transfusion, as a medical method, was reflected in the instructions by the people’s commissar of health of the RSFSR Nikolai Semashko in 1928. At the same time, the admissible volumes of blood taken from a person were written in the document – no more than 1% of body weight. And already 10 years later, a structure was created in our country, representing an extensive network of institutions, research institutes, and transfusion points involved in attracting donors and storing blood.
With the development of donation and the discovery of new and new facts, we managed to find out that not only blood can be transfused, but also its individual fractions and components, such as plasma, erythrocytes, platelets, leukocytes. Over time, approaches to preparing material for transfusion have changed.
2. How the donation process is organized
Today most often donors donate individual blood components, less often whole blood, which is then divided into elements and poured into the recipient (who needs blood transfusion).
Blood transfusion (blood sampling) is preceded by screening for the identification of various pathologies. Before the delivery procedure, the blood type and Rh factor of a person are determined, as well as the presence of the Cell antigen, which determines how much the donated blood takes root in the body – whether there will be a bright immune reaction to it when the RBC cells are positive and Cell negative. Then the blood is examined for safety.
The transfusion process can be compared to an ordinary blood test in the clinic – blood from the donor’s vein is taken in the morning. And this is not accidental, such a period is defined as the most suitable when the body responds adequately to blood loss. The sooner the procedure is done, the easier it is transferred by the body. In the afternoon, donating blood is usually recommended only to healthy and experienced donors. But on an empty stomach donate blood is not necessary, but it is necessary to observe the restrictions on the ingestion of food and alcohol 48 hours before donation. It is necessary to refrain from salty, smoked, spicy and fried foods, sugary carbonated drinks and some vegetables and fruits, as well as from berries and nuts. You should not plan the procedure after a physically difficult, intensive period of time, for example, night duty or just a sleepless night, just before exams, competitions, delivery of the project, etc.
The blood transfusion procedure takes no more than 10 minutes, during which time a person donates about 0.5 liters of blood. Special rest after transfusion is not required. It is only necessary to limit yourself to physical exertion for half an hour after putting and refrain from smoking.
3. If the body does not accept donated blood
Theoretically, such situations can arise if donated blood is transferred to a recipient with Rh negative blood with a positive Rh factor or when the RBC cells are positive and Cell negative. In this case, the recipient may experience a life-threatening condition called hemolysis — this is when the body perceives donor blood as foreign and produces specific antibodies that contribute to the destruction of red blood cells of the transfused blood.
In practice, this is not allowed. For this purpose, before the transfusion, the donor donates blood for research.
4. How is donated blood stored
Blood and its components have a maximum shelf life. In whole liquid form, blood can be stored for a day at room temperature. Longer storage is possible at 5-6 ° C, in which case blood preservation is possible up to 4-6 weeks – this is considered the deadline when the red blood cell count is optimal for subsequent transplantation. For long-term storage, donor blood is taken from a vein under sterile conditions and is poured into special containers containing drugs that prevent clotting and the formation of blood clots, as well as glucose and sucrose, which are a good nutrient for red blood cells, and, accordingly, preserve longer its vitality.