I’ve received many questions from potential donors about eligibility. In addition, lots of friends have declined to give for reasons that may not actually preclude them from donating. PLEASE, please check this list of frequently asked questions before making the decision not to donate. If you have further questions about specific medications or conditions not covered in the FAQ, please call (317) 916-5265. Thank you!!!
Q: If I donated whole blood today, how many days must I wait before I am eligible to donate whole blood again?
A: You must wait 56 days before you are eligible to donate whole blood again.
Q: If I donated platelets today, how many days must I wait before I am eligible to donate platelets again?
A: You must wait 7 days before you are eligible to donate platelets again.
Q: If I donated double red cells today, how many days must I wait before I am eligible to donate double red cells again?
A: You must wait 112 days before you are eligible to donate double red cells again.
Q: When I was donating blood, the technician checked my hemoglobin. What is hemoglobin?
A: Hemoglobin is the iron-containing pigment of red blood cells that carries oxygen from the lungs to the tissues of the body.
Q: Why is it important to know my hemoglobin result?
A: We want to make sure your iron levels are adequate, and that taking some of your blood will not leave you with too little iron, leading to a condition called anemia
Q: What is the normal hemoglobin range?
A: The normal range is 14-18 g/dL in men and 12-16 g/dL in women. A donor must have a hemoglobin value of at least a 12.5 g/dL to safely donate whole blood.
Q: How can I keep my hemoglobin level up?
A: You can help maintain a healthy hemoglobin level by eating a diet rich in iron, and avoiding iron-reducing foods. Examples of iron-boosting foods include beans, spinach, beef, shrimp, tomatoes, broccoli, rice, peas, watermelon and potatoes. Examples of iron-reducing foods include chocolate, caffeinated beverages and high calcium-containing foods.
Q: I was deferred because my hemoglobin level was too low. Does this mean I can never donate again?
A: Your hemoglobin level can fluctuate frequently, even on a daily basis. So, if you are deferred from donation due to a low hemoglobin level, please try again. Low hemoglobin is the most common reason for deferral. We encourage you to follow the dietary tips above and try again soon!
Q: If I am pregnant woman can I donate blood?
A: No. You cannot donate blood during pregnancy, but you may donate six weeks after delivery, provided you are released from your physician’s care.
Q: What is the universal blood type?
A: O negative is the universal blood type. All blood types can receive O negative blood.
Q: How long will it take to replenish the pint of whole blood I donate?
A: After donating blood, you replace the fluid in hours and the red blood cells within four weeks. It takes eight weeks to restore the iron lost after donating.