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Blood is the lifeforce of human beings. Red blood cells, plasma and platelets are always in demand as these can help treat many people with diverse medical conditions. In India, the demand for blood requires almost 40,000 donations each day. This blood is used in the treatment of many diseases including cancer, sickle cell disease, anemia, pregnancy complications, trauma patients and surgeries. Unfortunately, sometimes, the supply is less than the demand. As we get ready to celebrate World Blood Donor Day on June 14, let us see who can donate blood and who can't. The purpose of this day is to day to raise awareness about the global need for safe blood and how everyone can contribute. Not everyone can donate blood and the reasons are many. While certain health conditions, like jaundice, HIV and cancer, can disqualify you, there are a few other factors that are considered too.
Today, on World Blood Donor Day, we tell why you may not be able to donate blood despite wanting to and being in good health.
Any recent tattoo, piercing, semi-permanent make-up and any other procedures that requires piercing of skin can disqualify you from donating blood. It is mandatory for a donor not to get any such procedures done at least four months prior to donating blood. This is because such procedure may increase your risk of hepatitis virus because sometimes contaminated needles may be used.
You need to be healthy when donating blood. A fever is usually a sign of some infection. It may be viral, bacterial or parasitic as in the case of malaria. If you donate blood while you are infected, it will transfer the infection to the recipient of your blood. That is why this is one of the disqualifying points. The same goes for cough and the flu.
Antibiotics are used to treat bacterial infections. If you have an infection, you will obviously not be allowed to donate blood as it will contribute in spread of the disease you are suffering from. But if you have finished the antibiotic course say a month back and are feeling fine, you may be allowed to donate. But first a doctor will question you about why you needed antibiotics in the first place. If it was for an acute bacterial infection, you will probably be disqualified.
Underweight people are generally not encouraged to donate blood. Your height to weight ration has to be acceptable for you to donate blood. Otherwise, you may experience some adverse effects like dizziness and fainting. Also, minors are not allowed to donate. In most countries, you have to be 18 years of age to be able to donate blood.
If you are pregnant, you will not be allowed to donate blood. The same goes if you have just had a baby. This is because your body may not be able to bear the loss of even a small amount of blood.
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