Could You Knock Out A Triple?

Posted on 13th January 2011 in #writingworkshop/ action aid/ addenbrookes/ blood donation/ platelet donation

Sorry for the title – but I genuinely heard one of the staff call it that (and sound impressed) therefore it’s allowed.

This post is for @porridgebrain’s writing workshop, under the prompt of ‘GIVING’, Porridge has chosen this prompt to tie in with her support of Action Aid.

So, my post on the theme of giving has been inspired by my recent visit to the platelet donation centre at Addenbrookes hospital. It is a separate part of the hospital called Blood & Transplant, which for some reason is lodged in my head as Blood & Transport so I’ve confused a fair few people when discussing it, sorry.

I’ve you’ve read my post The Colour Red you’ll know that I can’t currently give blood. This is because I have an underactive thyroid which is on 6 ¬†monthly review – however I’ve been told that as soon as it goes to 12 monthly review I can donate, which I’m really pleased about. In the meantime I’m trying to urge as many of you who can, to click on the banner and register as a donor.

Seriously, what’s stopping you?

The phrase ‘knocking out a triple’ accounts for the number of units of platelets that you donate and is equivalent to 12 standard blood donations. It takes around and hour and a half, and is painless. The staff are warm, welcoming, friendly and appreciative. That last word, appreciative, really touched me as you could tell that every single staff member valued every single donor. It was lovely.

Only some people can donate platelets. When you go along to give blood – ask to be tested.

The following information is from the website:

As you know, there is always an urgent need for whole blood but you may not be aware that there is always the same need for platelets as well – every bit as urgent. At the moment we really need more platelets. We need both whole blood and platelets and our platelet contributions can only come from existing donors like you.

Most platelet donations are given to patients who are unable to make enough platelets in their bone marrow. For example, patients with leukaemia or other cancers may have too few platelets as the result of their disease or treatment.

Also after some major surgery or extensive injury, patients may need platelet transfusions to replace those lost through bleeding. Platelets given by our generous and committed donors are often life-saving and special in that they can help up to 3 adults or even 12 children! What’s more, as platelets can only be stored for a few days, regular and frequent donors are in great demand and that is why we are asking our platelet donors to attend at least 8 times per year.

We would like to emphasise again: both whole blood donors and platelet donors are equally valued and needed. If you do find that platelet donation is not for you, we very much hope you will continue to donate whole blood.”

If you want more information call the helpline 0300 123 23 23.

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  • Reply Ian McDowall 14th January 2011 at 9:37 am

    I recommend donating platelets. It is very easy and painless and the staff are always very friendly. If you can spare the time then it is a great way to help.

  • Reply Laura McIntyre 14th January 2011 at 2:53 pm

    It seems we have both blogger about giving blood for the writers workshop , something that is very close to my heart.

    I had no idea about platelets though and will definetly look into it next time i am donatating

    • Reply mrsljhall 14th January 2011 at 5:36 pm

      You should ask next time, takes them about 8 weeks to find out if you can donate or not. Hope you can x

  • Reply Michelle @utterlyscrummy 15th January 2011 at 6:19 pm

    I gave both whole blood and platelets for many years. However, I have developed a condition which means that I regularly need blood transfusions, and sometimes platelets as well. I too go to Addenbrookes, both for treatment and to work as a nurse. Blood donors are always needed and provide an invaluable resource. Please donate if you can, you never know when you may need some.

    • Reply mrsljhall 15th January 2011 at 7:42 pm

      Well said Michelle, sorry to hear you need transfusions yourself now, but at least you know that you’ve given too. As soon as I get the all clear to donate, I will be there – and maybe see you! x

  • Reply CaroleHolland 15th January 2011 at 10:17 pm

    I really should sign up but I’m not great with blood tests and that’s sort of scared me off. A lot.

    It’s not that I faint or anything, just more that I have very hard to get to veins and it tends to be quite painful and very slow just to get enough out for a blood test, never mind a pint! I will go one day and no doubt it won’t be as bad as I fear. I just need to build up the courage.

    Great post x

    • Reply mrsljhall 16th January 2011 at 10:58 am

      Maybe go with a friend? If you explain that to them, they’ll probably give you the most experience nurse. I do find that if the nurse is very good you can’t feel it at all. Good luck xx

  • Reply libertyfallsdown 16th January 2011 at 10:58 am

    Oh dear, Misfits has ruined the word ‘triple’ for me forever…

    But unfortunate associations aside, this is a really interesting post! I didn’t know you could donate platelets. I should really start donating blood. My grandfather has one of those rare blood types and used to be called up by the hospital in the middle of the night to donate. What an amazing feeling that must have been to be tangibly saving someone’s life.

    • Reply mrsljhall 16th January 2011 at 2:48 pm

      They have a register at the platelet centre of people they can phone at short notice if they urgently need platelets – you are right, it must be an amazing feeling to know that you are effectively saving someone else’s life.

  • Reply low platelets causes in pregnancy 31st July 2012 at 3:11 pm

    Can I donate blood/platelets even though I’ve been with a prostitute while using a condom?

    • Reply CoffeeCurls 31st July 2012 at 3:22 pm

      I really don’t know, you’d have to ring your local centre and ask them for advice.

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