View Full Version : Donating Blood

02-22-2007, 05:28 PM
Hi Guys,

I've already set a date for my operation which is going to be May 28th. But when i asked my surgeon do i need to donate blood he said no cos blood banks are getting annoyed with it, which took me by suprise cause mainly everyone gives blood before surgery. All he told me to do was take Iron tablet two months before surgery which im taking Fefol its a iron and folac icid tablets, he said they use a machine in surgery which recycles our blood thats why i don't need to givev any.

Does this sound right or should i just donate one or two????


02-22-2007, 06:07 PM
Hi Lee...

More and more, I'm hearing that surgeons are leaving the option of donating blood up to the patient, or even recommending against patients donating blood. The blood supply is considered very safe, and donating blood can definitely deplete a patient's reserves just at a when they need them the most.


02-22-2007, 06:32 PM
i had surgery on jan 4th 2007 and did not have to donate blood. they used a machine to recycle my blood. i had no problems

02-22-2007, 06:47 PM
My insurance supposedly will pay for storage and handling of my own donations, as long as I do have the surgery. So I could start donating months before and have it frozen or whatever they do with it until needed.

02-22-2007, 07:06 PM
Janet, Check on the shelf life of blood. The blood bank here only was able to store mine for a short time. I think it was 45 days max.

I was told by my Dr. that it was safe to donate 3 weeks before my surgery as my body would replace it by then.

The blood recycling machine was used during my surgery. I did need the pint I had donated, 2 days later.

I can't believe blood banks would be annoyed with patients donating their own blood. They charge a fortune for that service and that is what a blood bank is for, so I thought!

02-22-2007, 07:31 PM
My son's surgeon said that donating the blood would help in the healing process. He donated 2 units of his own and then his dad donated the last one. This all took place in the month before surgery as the shelf life of blood is somewhere around the 45 days as someone else stated. His blood was recycled with that machine during surgery, too, and then they gave him all 3 units of the blood in the 4 days after surgery. It really seemed to perk him up. I would say to take the iron pills and try and donate your blood, it can only benefit you.

Just my 2 cents ;)

02-22-2007, 08:28 PM
Suzy - Thats what i thought if we're donating our blood it shouldn't matter. But i think the problem there annoyed about it that we are donating for ourselves not for others.
But im shell shocked that blood banks can get so annoyed over us wanting to donate.


02-22-2007, 08:38 PM
I was told to donate my own blood prior to surgery and found it to be so stressful because you cannot donate if you are sick, etc. I missed a donation b/c I had a stomach bug. I managed to donate twice and then had to find people to donate for me and my blood type is not that common. At the last minute, some friends with my blood type donated for me, but the whole process stressed me out. Plus the blood is only good for a certain amount of days, etc. In one sense, it was reassuring to know that my own blood was available, but I went through a lot of aggravation as well. They did use a cell saver machine during my surgery and I believe transfused one unit of my own blood afterwards.

02-22-2007, 11:37 PM
I think the shelf life can be extended by freezing. My insurance co (Blue Cross PPO) said that the costs would be covered whether fresh or frozen - but only for my own donations and only if I had the surgery.

02-23-2007, 09:40 AM
I donated 2 units of blood and ended up receiving 2 additional units of donor blood in the OR. They used a cell saver as well. Each case is different and I was very anemic even after taking 4 iron tablets per day for a period of time.

02-23-2007, 09:46 AM
I didn't donate blood ahead of time, take iron supplements, nor as far as my husband or i can recall did i receive any additional units of blood during any of my surgeries... It's odd how different surgeons and hospitals handle things so differently, isn't it?