This is what happens to the Blood You Donate

This is what happens to the Blood You Donate

blood drop- abblood

If you are a regular blood donor or if you’ve ever donated blood, you must have wondered what happens to it after donation. Below we have explained blood’s journey once it’s taken out:

Step 1: Blood testing

Blood testing - abblood

After collection of your blood-the donated unit along with your several blood samples are labeled and taken to laboratory for testing. Blood testing is necessary to ensure that a safe supply is provided to patients. It is also made sure that no infection can pass from donor to patient through transfusion.

Step 2: Separating components of blood

components of blood - abblood
Yellow liquid is plasma. Red blood cells settle at the bottom and platelets in the middle.

The donated blood unit is now separated into red cells, plasma and platelets-the three essential components of blood. Different patients require different components of blood, depending on their condition.

Step 3: Testing for infections

tested for infections - abblood

The blood is typed; this includes identifying the ABO group and a negative or positive Rh factor. Combination of rigorous testing and pre donation screening ensures the safety of blood. Each sample is tested for infections like Hepatitis B Virus (HBV), Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), Hepatitis C Virus (HCV), Syphilis, etc. No blood unit is released for transfusion without clearing the required tests.

Step 4: Storage

blood storage - abblood

After the blood has been fragmented, cleared all tests, and been properly labeled and typed, it is stored in large freezers and refrigerators. Platelets need to be in motion all the time; this is why they are stored on an agitator.

Shelf life of blood components:

  • Red blood cells are stored in fridges at 4 degrees Celsius, where they can be kept for 35 days.
  • Plasma is frozen in freezers and can be stored for 12 months.
  • Platelets can be stored at room temperature for up to five days.

Due to very short shelf life of red blood cells and platelets, significant percentage of these two most needed blood components is wasted. Abblood’s objective is to provide blood when it is needed. We seek to help everyone in need of transfusion and make them less dependent on blood banks.

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