Side Effects of Blood Donation


blood donationThe side effects of blood donation which are rare may occur during or shortly after transfusion and sometimes in a period of several hours to several weeks or months after the procedure. Some of the common side effects are:

  • Fainting
  • Sweating or getting chills
  • Experiencing stiffness in joints
  • Stress or anxiety
  • Nausea and spasm
  • Tingling sensation on nose or lips

However, these symptoms are short term and disappear within a day of two. But, if the symptoms persist beyond two days a doctor must be consulted.

There are certain other types of blood donations apart from whole blood transfusion which may show side effects. These types of blood transfusion are called Automated Blood Collection Process (ABC Process). The ABC Process includes Apheresis where only platelets are taken from the blood and rest of the blood is transfused back to the donor; Alyx Blood Transfusion where red blood cells are separated from the blood and rest of the blood is sent back to donor’s body and Plasmapheresis where the plasma cell are separated from the blood and rest of the blood back to the donor. These transfusions are done for specific purposes and show very minimum common side effects.

Earlier, medical scientists were of the view that transfusion of blood is one of the ways of mass distribution of many diseases among the population and in clinical practice of blood transfusion it is a real threat to life or health of any potential recipient.

But, if blood transfusion is conducted in a proper way by adopting safety measures at all stages of blood transfusion, then the possibility of transmitting diseases is almost removed. The donor’s blood must be properly tested to see if it is fit to be transfused and disposable syringe must be used so as to avoid contamination.

To avoid side effects a blood donor must take certain precautions like getting adequate sleep before and after the donation, eating food properly and taking plenty of fluids.


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