Success Story
Jaden Nixon
Jaden Nixon Jackson, MS Sickle Cell Anemia "Without blood donors people with sickle cell disease would continue to have strokes" - Larry Nixon Jaden's Dad Dr. Larry Nixon and his wife Dee are grateful that their son Jaden has never needed a blood transfusion. But they know blood needs to be available if he should ever need it. Jaden has sickle cell disease. For most cases of sickle cell disease, blood transfusions are ... read more

  Apheresis platelet donation

There’s always a crying need for blood. But today there’s an even greater need for a specific component of blood: platelets. Platelets are very fragile, short lived blood cells that must be transfused to a patient within five days after donation. The most effective way for us to collect this vital blood component is through a special process called apheresis.
Put simply, apheresis separates blood platelets from whole blood. A separator automatically removes the platelets from your donation and returns the rest of your blood to you.
Platelets are the blood cells that help stop bleeding. Platelet donation helps patients undergoing treatment for cancer, open-heart surgery, blood disorders, and organ transplants. For these patients, transfusion can mean the difference between life and death. Quite often, these patients are very small children.
Traditionally, the only way to collect enough platelets for a single transfu¬sion was to take blood from approxi¬mately six donors, then separate the platelets from other blood cells by using a centrifuge.
Today, through apheresis, blood cell separators can collect enough platelets for a transfusion from a single donor. This prevents the patient from being exposed to more than one donor and reduces adverse reactions for the patient.
This donation procedure is simple, safe and sterile. All supplies used for platelet donations are new and sterile and used only once. After your donation, these supplies are destroyed.
Since there is an excess supply of platelets in the blood, many of them can be donated with no ill effect. The body replenishes its supply of platelets quickly, so they are always plentiful. The loss is made up within a few days. Usually, a donor can donate platelets as frequently as every 72 hours or donate platelets 14 days after a whole blood donation.
Platelet donors should refrain from aspirin, products containing aspirin and other anti-inflammatory medication for 72 hours before their next platelet donation, and ibuprofen 24 hours before donation.
Unlike whole blood donation, the average apheresis platelet donation takes about one to two hours because of the time required to separate and collect the platelets from the other blood components. We realize that’s a lot to ask, but you will be giving someone a lifetime.
To make things as pleasant as possible, you can choose from a large selection of DVDs to watch, enjoy cable TV or even read a book during your donation. After your donation enjoy refreshments on us.
Remember, just as with normal blood donations, there is absolutely no risk of contracting any type of disease as a result of apheresis donation.
To schedule your lifesaving platelet donation, please contact our telerecruitment department at 1 (888) 902-5663 ext. 2673 or by visiting our website at
By donating apheresis platelets you are helping Mississippi Blood Services in supplying the more than 9,600 components needed annually, reducing the risk associated with multiple donors and giving a second chance to a patient in need of this life-saving resource.

Posted on 10/7/2010

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