Over the past three weeks, the Blood Center has been forced to cancel dozens of blood drives (68, and counting) leading to a loss of more than 2200 donations due to record cold tempatures, snow, and ice.
If you are able to safely travel to donate blood this week, please do. To find a donation location near you, call (800) 747-5401, visit www.bloodcenterimpact.org, or use the Blood Center’s IMPACT mobile app.
With another winter storm on the way to portions of our service region, we will continue to provide information on the impact of winter weather at www.bloodcenter.org/weather.
Red cells, white cells and platelets are made in the marrow of bones, especially the vertebrae, ribs, hips, skull and sternum. These essential blood cells fight infection, carry oxygen and help control bleeding.
Plasma is a pale yellow mixture of water, proteins and salts. One of the functions of plasma is to act as a carrier for blood cells, nutrients, enzymes and hormones. Plasma can be stored in a frozen state for up to one year. It is used to treat bleeding disorders and burn patients.
Red cells are disc-shaped cells containing hemoglobin, which enables the cells to pick up and deliver oxygen to all parts of the body. Red Blood Cells can be stored under refrigeration for up to 42 days. They are used to treat sickle cell and anemia as well as during surgery and trauma that results in blood loss.
Platelets are small cells in the blood that control bleeding. They form clusters to plug small holes in blood vessels and assist in the clotting process. Platelets are stored at room temperature and must be used within five days. They are used to treat cancer and during some surgeries, such as organ transplant.
Cryoprecipitate is made from frozen plasma. It helps blood to clot, especially for patients who have certain types of bleeding disorders. Cryoprecipitate can be stored in a frozen state for up to one year. It is used to treat hemophilia, a bleeding disorder.
These are not typically transfused and are filtered out through a process called leukoreduction.