the basics

infographic about platelet donation

During a platelet donation, blood is drawn into a centrifuge to separate the components. Once separated, the platelets are removed from the centrifuge while the remaining blood components are returned to the donor. The preferred blood types for this procedure are A+, B+, AB+ and AB-, but you can also donate if you are one of the remaining types.

Platelet need

We need platelets EVERY day, but because platelets only have a 7 day shelf life, FRIDAY-MONDAY are higher need days. Collecting more on those days ensures platelets will be ready Monday-Thursday, days when transfusion and surgeries are more likely to be scheduled by a hospital.

days of the week with Sunday, Monday, Friday and Saturday highlighted in red

How Long Does it Take?

Depending on your weight and height, the apheresis donation process will take approximately 70 minutes to two hours. You may watch television or videotapes, listen to music, or simply sit back and relax while helping to save a life.

Donor Informed Consent  Donor Informed Consent (Spanish)

preferred blood types

  • A positive
  • B positive
  • AB positive and negative

In addition to the standard donor eligibility requirements, platelet donors have additional medication considerations:

  • No aspirin or aspirin products can be taken 48 hours before donating, because aspirin affects platelets' ability to function properly.
  • Some other medications affect platelets and may result in a temporary inability to donate. Piroxicam (Feldene) use requires a 2-day deferral after stopping. The anti-platelet drugs clopidogrel (Plavix), ticlopidine (Ticlid), cilostazol (Pletal), and Aggrenox (dipyridamole) require a 14-day deferral after stopping.  Brilinta (ticagrelor) requires a 7-day deferral after stopping.  Effient (Prasugrel) requires a 3-day deferral after stopping.  
  • Ibuprofen Motrin, Advil and many other non-aspirin drugs ARE acceptable.

To be certain a medication is acceptable, call 800-747-5401 and ask to speak to someone in Audit Support. Donors must never stop prescribed drugs in order to donate, unless they have cleared this with their doctor.

Platelet Donation Frequency

infographic showing 24 figures with donating bands on arm and says up to 24 times a year

Our bodies are constantly replacing platelets so you are eligible to donate once a week, up to 24 times a year. Healthy individuals have a surplus of platelets, so removal of this quantity has no adverse affects.

While donors are eligible to donate more frequently with platelet donations, you don’t necessarily need to commit to giving this often. Our recruitment department is happy to work with you to find a donation frequency pattern that works best for you and fits what time you have to donate. 

  • Wait 7 days after a platelet donation to give whole blood.
  • Wait 7 days after a whole blood to donate platelets.
  • Wait 28 days after a plasma product donation to donate whole blood.
  • Wait 112 days after a double red cell donation.

For more information or to make an appointment, call us at 800-747-5401 or email