Platelet donation by automation (apheresis) allows for one donation to help up to three patients. The donor’s platelet count and available time will help determine how many platelet doses can be collected.
What are platelets?
Platelets are cell fragments within our blood that are a major part of blood clotting. They are like the bricks that plug up a hole in a blood vessel, and then clotting proteins in the blood act like the mortar to hold the bricks (platelets) together.
Is it safe to donate platelets?
Donating platelets is safe for healthy adults.
Who is eligible to donate platelets?
With the exception of those taking certain medications that interfere with platelet function [such as aspirin, Feldene (piroxicam®), Plavix (clopidogrel®), Brilinta (ticagrelor®), Effient (prasugrel®), Ticlid (ticlopidine®) and Zontivity (vorapaxar®)] most healthy adults who meet our whole blood requirements are also eligible to donate platelets.
Females who have been pregnant will need to be screened for the possible presence of HLA antibodies at least once prior to donation of apheresis platelets. HLA antibodies may form in a woman following her exposure to the white blood cells of her unborn child during pregnancy and can cause serious reactions in a transfusion recipient.
How long does it take?
A platelet donation can take up to two hours, but the impact is long lasting for those patients dependent on platelet transfusions.
How often can you donate platelets?
You can donate platelets up to 24 times in 12 months.
Who needs platelets?
Platelets help the blood clot, and are used primarily in cancer patients, heart surgery, and massive bleeding such as trauma.