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Author Topic: The blood bank doesn't want my mom's blood
m3lissa47
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Now, I have given blood about 3 times in the past two years (since it became legal for me), and my mom thought it was a great and wanted to give it a go too. So yesterday my mom gets her chance at work where they held a blood drive. She goes in and during the questioning process the girl asks about having close contact with anyone who's had AIDS. My mom then explains that her brother had died from AIDS in '91, and the girl asks if she took care of him during that time. My mom says well yes, when she was there, however she was never exposed to any blood, feces, sores, etc. that would have caused her to contract the disease and that since then she had been tested "just in case" and everything came out fine. The girl refused her anyway on the grounds that my uncle was an immediate family member whom she helped care for.

Now my question is, is this really something they turn you down for? Out of all the times I've given blood I've never had this question asked, even this most recent time, just 3 weeks ago, because if I had my answer would have been the same as my mother's and in that theory I would have been turned down too.

Mel "Confused" issa

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AnglsWeHvHrdOnHiRdr
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I have never heard the immediate caregivers clause for HIV/AIDS. Hepatitis, perhaps, but not HIV/AIDS.

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Rhiandmoi
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I think each blood center is allowed to ask their own questions as long as they also ask the basics.
So short answer is yes they can turn you down depending on the blood center and the nurse doing the questioning.

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BeachLife
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Yep, each blood center can have their own reasons for rejecting. Seems like a great majority of questions are based on aids, but I think they test for it anyway, don't they?

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Davros
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quote:
Originally posted by BeachLife:
Yep, each blood center can have their own reasons for rejecting. Seems like a great majority of questions are based on aids, but I think they test for it anyway, don't they?

In Australia they ask about IV drug use tatoo in the last 6 months and also test for Aids and Hep A & C
they also do a red cell count b4
and make you eat and or drink

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m3lissa47
The Red and the Green Stamps


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Beachlife, yes they do, but I guess they just figure its a hell of a lot easier/cheaper to just filter out the unwanted blood beforehand. They also test your blood for iron content, however that comes beforehand where the actual disease testing isn't until afterwards.

Well, I just told my mom that if she still wanted to donate Red Cross has never turned me down or even asked that question. Thanks everyone for the answers, for some reason I assumed those questions were all standerd protocol and didn't differ from place to place.

Mel "You know what happens when you assume" issa

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Lady Moon Shadows
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Tell your mom to go to the main blood center in your city. Sometimes the blood mobile's are a little more strict than the main center. Though they all ask the same questions, it's likely because of the capacity of the mobile, it may be they are more stringent.

It's funny about the aids thing.. my husband just donated blood a couple of months ago--we received a letter that said he had a "false positive" for the virus, that he had better get tested to be sure.

We *know* (and I can swear that on the bible) he has been no where but with me... so the false positive came from medicines he was taking for the flu.

It's likely they were just playing it safe--albeit a bit too stringent since they do test for the virus.

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Chimera
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waffles are good for the blood

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Chimera
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They don't want to get sued and hopefully they don't want to infect others. I believe some of the questions are odd (e.g. have you visited such and such a place, lived for more than x amount of time in foriegn coutry du jour, had your ears pierced/tattoo within the past year or so?) but they are trying to eliminate high risk based on averages. Still I think it is better to eliminate possibly contaminated blood and have the test as simply a double check than it is to rely soley on the testing. For those trying to save face they can still "donate" blood here. If someone is high risk the blood won't be used but they will extract it (an unnecessary expense and danger if you ask me). They just have the individual mark the bag with the "do not use" bar code and then they can look good for their company or organization for "giving blood". I really think that practice should be stopped but I don't run the place, nor do I understand what great social presure a group could put upon someone that would cause them to willling bleed without benifit to anyone.

I've been defered a couple time do to my iron count. I'm borderline anemic but now I pass them. Which was fine with me because giving blood is something I'll do if asked but its not my favourite activity. But now they say they can get better, higher iron, results if they take the sample from the earlobe rather than the finger tips. From what they describe it sounds as if iron just sits around collecting in the earlobe while it is pounded out of the finger tips by typing. It sounds very ULish to me but I've tested better since they changed methods, perhaps they are just lying about the results... sadly that wouldn't surprise me. I have low blood presure and that's been commented on. However the only thing I'm ever asked, if I'm asked anything at all, is if I've eaten that day. I tell them what I ate and they ignore the BP numbers.). I once dodged an apherisis donation because I was pregnant (I hate those things, the needles are like twice as big and it takes about two hours... I also don't like the idea of my blood going for a scenic trip and then most of it coming back home to me... too creepy.). I don't really like giving Oddly, aside from not being able to view a needle going into me or in me (they have to cover it up) I do quite well with blood donations. I have to look away when it is inserted or I'd have a natural reflex reation to pull away. Hey, its a sharp object coming at me. Also I hate things in my skin. I almost went mad the time an ex-boyfriend's mom stuck accupuncture needles in me. I really had the desire to rip them out, I can't stand to see things in my flesh. I used to epilate my entire body (everything but my head) because I couldn't stand the thought of the hairs sticking in me so I had to pull them out)... sorry for the off topic rant. Anyway, my point was that I was a questionable candidate at best, even my weight is many times border line, but they still always take my blood. Sometimes I wish they were more cautious. I think a lot of times it just depends on who you get. My dad can't give blood (he'll pass out... almost certain it was due to nerves) and they asked him not to come back.

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What is the use of women?"
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Crono
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When I first started giving blood, they took a sample from my earlobe to do the iron test. A couple of years later, they took it from my finger instead. I asked them why, and they said that blood from the finger gives a more accurate iron count. Ever since then, they've always taken blood from my finger at every location that I've been.

That being said, I've also been told by the people who work at the blood donation stations that the iron count can vary day to day and can depend a lot on what you've eaten that day (or whether or not you have eaten that day). Even if you fail the iron test, it doesn't necessarily mean that there's anything unhealthy about you.

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Jason Threadslayer
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quote:
Originally posted by Chimera:
I believe some of the questions are odd (e.g. have you visited such and such a place, lived for more than x amount of time in foriegn coutry du jour,

That's for BSE and other diseases. It may sound odd to you, but they're usually based on CDC, WHO, Red Cross, and other health organisation's research.

Turkmenistan should be on the top of the list -- Tukmenbashi's plan to eradicate the plague there is to outlaw it.

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Danvers Carew
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Here's the UK guidelines on who can't donate blood.

quote:
You should never give blood if:
...
2 You're a man who's had sex with another man, even "safe sex" using a condom.

This one always confuses me when I go to donate blood. I can only assume the reasoning is that they imagine gay men to have a higher chance of having a disease that renders their blood unsuitable, but if they test each donation for every disease anyway, it surely doesn't matter who's had sex with who? A man who has unprotected sex with a hundred different women a week would be eligible but a man whose sexual history comprises a single occasion of protected sex with another man, for whom the encounter was also his sole sexual experience, would be automatically refused. Perhaps there's something I'm missing?

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The Ota Faction
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quote:
Originally posted by Danvers Carew:
Here's the UK guidelines on who can't donate blood.

quote:
You should never give blood if:
...
2 You're a man who's had sex with another man, even "safe sex" using a condom.

This one always confuses me when I go to donate blood. I can only assume the reasoning is that they imagine gay men to have a higher chance of having a disease that renders their blood unsuitable, but if they test each donation for every disease anyway, it surely doesn't matter who's had sex with who? A man who has unprotected sex with a hundred different women a week would be eligible but a man whose sexual history comprises a single occasion of protected sex with another man, for whom the encounter was also his sole sexual experience, would be automatically refused. Perhaps there's something I'm missing?
The US Red Cross asks if you've ever had sex with another man since 1977. My smart ass reply is always, "Yes, but not since 1977." Which is funny because I was born in 1978. Well, I think it's funny [fish] .

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Laura
The Red and the Green Stamps


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I think it's better to be safe than sorry. They obviously have good reason for asking each question.

I failed the iron test once. I still had to give blood as they needed to take a larger sample to test me for Anemia and such. They sent me a letter saying i was ok though. Iv'e never failed before or since.

Personally, i just go and give blood for the free tea and biscuits at the end. he he he!

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mrs.hi-c clown fishies
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There was recently an article in our paper about a woman who couldn't donate blood for one reason or another...I want to say it was Ann Landers (annie's mailbox) or something. The person couldn't understand why, if there's always a shortage of blood, can't someone who was travelling, got a tattoo, had a homosexual relationship...etc. couldn't donate. Sometimes those questions are way too strict. Personally, I think that the OP's mom could've donated, just the phlebotomist/nurse had a bug up her NFBSK.

mrs.hi-"2 tattoos and still afraid of needles"C

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dam9191
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I also know that when my spouse had mono, that he was told that he wouldn't be able to donate blood for 12 years.

dam "...and all their blood was red" 9191

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So I can't believe in Room 19."
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nahemah
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In Australia, I am not allowed to donate blood because I spent more than 6 months in the UK before the end of 1996. It's to do with the prevalence of CJD (Human form of mad cows disease) over there.

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Chimera
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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Wow, someone who knows what CJD is. Well actually I know but that's only because I asked a blood centre employee. I always ask stupid questions (that's how I found out the "do not use" blood gets thrown out, which really upsets me... I hoped it was used for research or something but spending the time and expense for no reason at all is ignorant IMHO). Heck I've even bugged a cop before after I got in a bit of trouble. It was nothing major (no arrest but he did drive me home)... anywho, I was in the back (no seatbelt on) looking up front at all his stuff and asking about it (especially the computer screen thingy). Perhaps sometimes I should just remain silient.

BTW I mentioned this thread to my parents yesterday and my dad brought me my iron drops (I still have iron, I just don't take it). When he came by to pick up the kid he asked if I took it today. When I said no he was surprised and upset which is odd since in the past decade I've rarely taken it. BTW, he's taking my son to the fair... he's a senior and my son is a little one so they both get in free. They'll see the shows and exhibits today then go next week just to ride the rides on the one price unlimited ride day. I know there was little point in sharing that but I think its a good arrangement It saves money and allows the boy to have time to enjoy the whole fair. (Chimera's cost saving tip of the day: find some old dude to take your little one to fun and interesting places.)

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"The question for joining the protected forum for real magicians should be:

What is the use of women?"
Steve W. from JREF's 'This is no fun'

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the Virgin Marrya
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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quote:
Originally posted by Chimera:
Wow, someone who knows what CJD is.

I know "the plural of anecdote isn't data", but, I'd pick that most people on this side of the planet know what CJD is.


Marry "no nukes, no mad cows...well, not the bovine kind" ya

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EEEK...It's Lara
The Red and the Green Stamps


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I've been sent away a few times becaue of my anemia, and I know if I travel to Britain a few more times, I'll be banned for life [Frown]

The first time my sister went, she was nearly turned away because she had taken beef insulin (she's a diabetic) twice 15 years ago. There were flurried phone calls all over to find out if the insulin she took was made in the US or the UK.

Eventually, they proved it was US insulin and she donated. Then she passed out because she was dehydrated. Poor girl.

I also couldn't give for a while because I had a blood transfusion after my accident. Ten years later the hospital disclosed that they hadn't had proper controls for hepatitis C. Had to get tested for that, which scary.

Speaking as someone who's had a blood transfusion and been through that scare, I'd rather they were safer. I don't want to rely on the tests after donation to screen everything.

La "and I'm eternally grateful to the donor who saved my life" ra

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eakf
The Red and the Green Stamps


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Next time I give blood I'll have to ask more questions. After all, they seem to be comfortable asking me all sorts of personal questions. [Smile]

I try to donate as often as possible and I like to ask questions too. As for AIDS, they always as if I've ever been tested for AIDS and ask what the result was. They also ask many other sex related questions and travel questions. Those are the hard ones for me as I travel a lot on business and I need to keep a log of how many days here, how many weeks there etc... I'm sure I'll be ruled out soon.

I'm pretty sure that the reason they err on the side of safety (in Canada anyway) is because of the cost of testing. Not to mention the risk of liability.

I was turned away once for having an eye infection. The reasoning wasn't the drugs I was taking for it, but the nurse explained that my body needed the blood (to combat the infection) more than they did.

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Slainey
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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Funny. Now they think bloodletting may help with some infections.

http://msnbc.msn.com/id/5953918/

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Pseudo_Croat
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quote:
Originally posted by Slainey:
Funny. Now they think bloodletting may help with some infections.

http://msnbc.msn.com/id/5953918/

Hmmm. Maybe I should've stopped over by the bloodmobile I passed by during my lunch break and given a pint. You see, I've had this scratchy throat and cough for the last few days, and maybe it could've done some good.

Or maybe this suggests that being anemic might be a blessing in disguise?

- Pseudo "overdrawn at the blood bank" Croat

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Nolly
Fin City


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I'm surprised that M.S. isn't listed in the exclusions list. I have M.S. and I inquired about donating. I was told that I could not donate because M.S. is an auto-immune disease (as is Crohn’s, Ulcerative Colitis, Fibromyalgia, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Insulin-Dependent Diabetes Mellitus and Lupus to name a few)
Does this mean all persons suffering these diseases cannot donate? That seems to exclude a great number of people.

Nol 'and this was just after 911 when they were desperate' ly

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EEEK...It's Lara
The Red and the Green Stamps


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No, it doesn't mean that, at least not in the U.S.

My sister is an insulin-dependant diabetic (has been since age 13), and she's allowed to give here. There was just, as I explained above, the controversy over whether one has had beef insulin from the U.K.

I'm not sure about Canada, though. I don't see how an auto-immune disease would pass through to the recipient. Maybe someone with more medical knowledge could chime in...

La "bloody hell" ra

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rotten little boys
The Red and the Green Stamps


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So just how long after risky behavior does one have to wait?

Because I am 'exposed' to someone who was molested as a teenage boy, I can not give blood. I am speaking of something that happened nearly 20 years ago. Somehow, I think things would have shown up since then.

When I had a tattoo done 13 years ago, I was still eligible after what, 6 months?

Why such a long wait for some things but not others?

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ThespiSis
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I was told the last time I tried to give that I couldn't give until October 2007 because I had had thyroid cancer (1 3mm spot discovered after the surgery) but had only had surgery and not radiation.

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