NORBERT WEBER (GERMANY)

201811232   Please, donate your blood….

​At what age can you donate blood?

All women and men over the age of 18 years are allowed to give a full blood donation. Although there is no general age limit for blood donors, every blood donation service has a maximum age limit. 

In the DRK, this is e.g. 72 years. As a first donor you should not be older than 65 years and have a minimum weight of 50 kilograms.

How often can you donate blood?2

Women can be four times within 365 days and men six times during this period. 

Between the donations must be at least 56 days.

Who can not donate blood?

Anyone who does not feel fit, ie has a cold or a sore throat, should not donate. 

During pregnancy, six months after birth and during breastfeeding may also not be donated. 

Anyone who has tattooed or pierced within the past four months is also disqualified.

What else can prevent a donation?

Other exclusion criteria include the use of heart medicines and blood thinners (including aspirin) and the use of drugs. 

Alcohol consumption must be at least twelve hours ago. In addition, no blood may be given before and after surgery. 

Likewise, homosexual men are not allowed to donate blood unless they have not had sex for 12 months. 

Homosexual women are not affected by this exclusion.

Does the last holiday affect the ability to donate?

In certain circumstances, yes. Depending on the duration and location, the visit may result in a deferral. 

These include malaria areas such as Africa, Vietnam or India. 

In addition, countries with a risk of infection for the Zika virus, such as Central and South America, the Caribbean or Southeast Asia. 

The pathogen of the West Nile virus also ensures that travel destinations such as the USA, parts of Italy and Greece as well as Vienna are on the exclusion list.

 Anyone who is unsure – whether in terms of resort or taking medication – can call the toll-free hotline 0800/119 491 1 before the donation and ask his questions there.

Can the flu shot prevent a donation?

No. In fact, you can donate again the following day after the flu shot. The situation is different with vaccinations with live vaccine. 

Here, no blood may be donated for a certain time.

What should be considered before a donation?

On the day of the donation you should eat enough and drink a lot (1.5 liters). You should also allow enough time. The donation itself takes only five to ten minutes, but with registration, examination and the time after the donation you should count on 60 minutes.

First, the registration takes place with presentation of the identity card. Subsequently, a questionnaire must be completed. In the next step, the hemoglobin value (iron value) of the blood is measured and blood pressure, heart rate and body temperature are determined. If everything is fine, it goes to the examination by a doctor. 

This ultimately determines the ability to donate. Then the blood donation takes place. In this case, about 500 milliliters of blood are removed with a disposable needle from an arm vein. After the donation you should stay a few minutes. Afterwards DRK offers a snack for refreshment

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