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Category: Learn About Blood

Keeping Blood Safe

Processing of donated blood

After donation, blood is mechanically separated into various components

The most common components are Packed Red cells components; Platelets concentrates, Fresh Frozen Plasma, and Cryoprecipitate

These components are used in treatment of different blood disorders

Storage of blood and blood components

Whole blood (unseparated) is stored refrigerated at +2 0 C to + 60 C for up to 35 days

Platelet concentrates are stored at +20 0 C + 240 C for up to 5 days with constant agitation

Fresh frozen plasma and cryoprecipitate are stored frozen at -20 0 C to -24 0 C for up to 3 months, -250 C to -29 0 C for up to 6 months, -30 0 C to -39 0 C for 12 months; -40 0 C to -64 0 C for 24 months and -65 0 C and below for 7 years or longer.

History of Blood Transfusion

First successful human blood transfusion was done in 1818 by Dr. James Blundell to treat postpartum haemorrhage, later in 1900 Karl Landsteiner discovered the  ABO blood group system.

Approximately A total of 36 human blood group systems exists with 346 antigens which are now recognized by the International Society of Blood Transfusion.  The two most important blood group systems are ABO and the Rhesus (Rh) blood group systems which are used to determine someone’s blood group which may be A, B, AB and O, with +, − . Rhesus positive individuals i.e. A+ ,B+, AB+ and O+ poses Rh antigen on the surface of their cells while Rhesus negative individuals i.e. A-, B-, AB- and O- do not pose Rh antigen on the surface of their cells. The presence or absence of rhesus antigen does not mean presence or absence of a disease pathogen or infection.

For safety in blood transfusion, patients receiving blood must have their blood groups matched with compatible blood group from blood donors as illustrated in the table below.

Blood Type Donate Blood To Receive Blood From
A+ A+ AB+ A+ A-O+ O-
O+ O+ A+ B+ AB+ O+ O-
B+ B+ AB+ B+ B- O+ O-
AB+ AB+ Everyone
A- A+ A- AB+ AB- A-     O-
O- Everyone O-
B- B+ B- AB+ AB- B-     O-
AB- AB+ AB- AB- A- B- O-

Testing of blood

Screening of donated blood for transfusion transmissible infections

Donated blood is screened for Syphilis; Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and HIV which can be transmitted through an otherwise unsafe blood.

Highly sensitive methods are used to screen the blood to ensure that the risk of getting an infection through a blood transfusion is eliminated

Only units that are found to be free from the above infections are transfused.

Blood is also tested to determine the donor ABO blood group as well as the Rhesus phenotype.

All blood donors are notified of the status of the four transmissible diseases from the donated blood and their ABO-Rh group for free after blood donation.

Blood Group Basics

Approximately A total of 36 human blood group systems exist with 346 antigens which are now recognized by the International Society of Blood Transfusion.  The two most important blood group systems are ABO and the Rhesus (Rh) blood group systems which are used to determine someone’s blood group which may be A, B, AB and O, with +, − . Rhesus positive individuals i.e. A+ ,B+, AB+ and O+ poses Rh antigen on the surface of their cells while Rhesus negative individuals i.e. A-, B-, AB- and O- do not pose Rh antigen on the surface of their cells. The presence or absence of rhesus antigen does not mean presence or absence of a disease pathogen or infection.

For safety in blood transfusion, patients receiving blood must have their blood groups matched with compatible blood group from blood donors as illustrated in the table below.

 

Blood Type Donate Blood To Receive Blood From
A+ A+ AB+ A+ A-O+ O-
O+ O+ A+ B+ AB+ O+ O-
B+ B+ AB+ B+ B- O+ O-
AB+ AB+ Everyone
A- A+ A- AB+ AB- A-     O-
O- Everyone O-
B- B+ B- AB+ AB- B-     O-
AB- AB+ AB- AB- A- B- O-

 

How Blood is Used

Blood and blood products have different uses depending on the patient’s/recipient’s ailment. KNBTS issues blood as Red Packed Blood Cells, Fresh Frozen Plasma, Platelets, Cryoprecipitate and Whole Blood.

Red Blood Cells

Red blood cell transfusions are used to treat haemorrhage and to improve oxygen delivery to tissues. Transfusion of red blood cells should be based on the patient’s clinical condition. Indications for transfusion include symptomatic anaemia (causing shortness of breath, dizziness, congestive heart failure, and decreased exercise tolerance), acute sickle cell crisis, and acute blood loss of more than 30 percent of blood volume.

Plasma

Plasma products available include fresh frozen plasma is recommended in patients with active bleeding. Fresh frozen plasma is indicated for correction of coagulation abnormalities.

Platelets

Platelet transfusion may be indicated to prevent haemorrhage in patients with thrombocytopenia or platelet function defects.

Cryoprecipitate

Cryoprecipitate is prepared by thawing fresh frozen plasma and collecting the precipitate.

This blood product is usually indicated for conditions like; Haemorrhage after cardiac surgery, Massive haemorrhage or transfusion, Surgical bleeding

Whole Blood

Whole blood, if available, may be indicated for large volume haemorrhage, such as seen with major trauma, requiring massive transfusion and rapid correction of anemia, coagulopathy, acidosis, and hypothermia

 

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