I'm about a pint low. . ..

Well, I donated blood today. They held a blood drive at my school and I signed up and did it. It’s the first time I’ve done it. It was kind of strange, I thought, but it was also not as bad as I thought it would be.

I had to read some stuff and sign a paper saying I’d read the stuff. I then had to fill out a form stating that I am not a man who has had sex with another man since 1977 nor am I a woman who has had sex with a man who has had sex with another man since 1977. There were other questions on the form, of course. . .

Then the lady took my blood pressure and temperature and pulse and pricked my finger and put a drop of blood in this blue liquid where it (presumably) coagulated and sank to the bottom. She pronounced it useable.

I then layed down on a lounge chair thingie they had, and they put a blood pressure cuff on my arm and pumped it up and had me squeeze a little tube thing so they could find a vein. They couldn’t find a vein. I had to turn around so they could use the other arm. They found a vein, and wiped some of this orange-brown stuff on it (iodine?).

Then she put the needle in. It didn’t hurt hardly at all. she said to squeeze the little tube thing once every ten to fifteen seconds. It took maybe fifteen to twenty minutes and then I was done. I didn’t get dizzy or lightheaded or anything. I went over to the tables and had some pop and food. I then went back to class.

I’m tired. I’ve been tired all day. I imagine this has something to do with it. Otherwise, though, I feel fine. It’s something I’ve always kind of wanted to do, and now I imagine I’ll do it more often. For those of you who do donate, keep doing it. For those who don’t but could, go do it. It’s not that bad.

…when I was a freshmen in college. When a friend was going into surgery a bunch of us went in to get typed to donate specifically for him, then I just kept going. (He recovered nicely) I’ve moved a bunch, but have donated whole blood fairly regularly for 16 years, except after the Gulf War when I was told not to give for three years (yikes). A few years back I began apheresis (sp?) where they take whole blood out of one arm, run it through a machine to extract the white blood cells, then re-deposit the blood back into the other arm. It equals ten pints of whole blood for leukemia patient, or some such stat. Takes about an hour, and you can’t move you arms, but the staff would rub my nose, push up my glasses, and anything else I needed. Got to watch movies, too!

In the military if you gave blood you didn’t have to run. So whenever they had a blood drive during the hot days, I would be there and since Tech school was in Biloxy Miss that was most of the time. Also giving blood was like a party atmosphere with most of my friends heading off to the clinic.

Unfortunately last time I tried to give blood, my blood floated. So now I am on iron pills and hopefully can soon be at it again.

So when they pricked my finger and put a drop into the liquid stuff, that’s what they were testing for? (When they dropped it in there, it sank . . .)(Well, most of it. . .)

Yes they are testing for iron in the blood. Maybe one of our resident doctors will drop by and give us a crash coarse on why iron deficient blood is not good.

I used to give blood regularly. See, I’m O-, which means they would call me when it got to the point that I could give blood again.

But, my current job has me traveling to a number of areas that prevent me from donating, because they are considered “malaria” areas, and I have to wait 12 months after a visit to one before I can donate again. Currently, I’d have to wait until February 2002, and that’s if I quit traveling.

I use to give blood all the time - not quite sure what happened… Thanks to Garfield226 I will look into it tomorrow. Now where is that phone book… :slight_smile: