FAQs on Blood Collection

We collect about 450 ml (a pint) of blood during a single blood donation.

The plasma portion of your donation is replaced within hours and the platelet portion within days. Red blood cells can take months to replenish.

You should avoid strenuous activity for six to eight hours after giving blood.

Only for a moment. Pinch the fleshy, soft underside of your arm. That pinch is similar to what you will feel when the needle is inserted.

The entire process takes about one hour and 15 minutes; the actual donation of a pint of whole blood unit takes eight to 10 minutes. However, the time varies slightly with each person depending on several factors including the donor’s health history.

After blood is drawn, it is tested for ABO group (blood type) and Rh type (positive or negative)

Blood is tested for:

— Hepatitis B virus

— Hepatitis C virus

— HIV-1 and HIV-2

— Syphilis

— Malaria

Most people tolerate blood donation very well. However, some people experience fatigue. You should discuss your concerns before and after donation with a staff member at the blood donor center

You are aged between 18 and 65.

You need to be at least 50 Kg to donate blood.

Yes. Menstruating doesn’t affect your ability to donate.

Acceptable as long as you feel well, have no fever, and have no problems breathing through your mouth.

Acceptable as long as you do not have any limitations on daily activities and are not having difficulty breathing at the time of donation and you otherwise feel well. Medications for asthma do not disqualify you from donating.

Bleeding Condition
If you have a history of bleeding problems, you will be asked additional questions. If your blood does not clot normally, you should not donate since you may have excessive bleeding where the needle was placed. For the same reason, you should not donate if you are taking any blood thinner.
If you are on aspirin, it is OK to donate whole blood. However, you must be off of aspirin for at least 2 full days in order to donate platelets by apheresis.

High Blood Pressure

Acceptable as long as your blood pressure is below 180 systolic and below 100 diastolic at the time of donation. Medications for high blood pressure do not disqualify you from donating.

Low Blood Pressure

Acceptable as long as you feel well when you come to donate, and your blood pressure is at least 90/50 (systolic/diastolic).

Pulse (High or Low)
Acceptable as long as your pulse is no more than 100 and no less than 50.


Eligibility depends on the type of cancer and treatment history. If you had leukemia or lymphoma, including Hodgkin’s Disease and other cancers of the blood, you are not eligible to donate. Other types of cancer are acceptable if cancer has been treated successfully and it has been more than 12 months since treatment was completed and there has been no cancer recurrence at this time. Lower risk in-situ cancers including squamous or basal cell cancers of the skin that have been completely removed do not require a 12-month waiting period.

Precancerous conditions of the uterine cervix do not disqualify you from donation if the abnormality has been treated successfully. You should discuss your particular situation with the health historian at the time of donation.

Diabetics who are well controlled on insulin or oral medications are eligible to donate.

Heart Disease
In general, acceptable as long as you have been medically evaluated and treated, have no current (within the last 6 months) heart-related symptoms such as chest pain and have no limitations or restrictions on your normal daily activities.

Hemoglobin, Hematocrit, Blood Count

In order to donate blood, a woman must have a hemoglobin level of at least 12.5 g/dL, and a man must have a hemoglobin level of at least 13.0 g/dL. For all donors, the hemoglobin level can be no greater than 20 g/dL.

Hepatitis, Jaundice

If you have signs or symptoms of hepatitis (inflammation of the liver) caused by a virus, or unexplained jaundice (yellow discoloration of the skin), you are not eligible to donate blood. If you ever tested positive for hepatitis B or hepatitis C, at any age, you are not eligible to donate, even if you were never sick or jaundiced from the infection.


If you have active tuberculosis or are being treated for active tuberculosis you should not donate. Acceptable if you have a positive skin test or blood test, but no active tuberculosis and are NOT taking antibiotics. If you are receiving antibiotics for a positive TB skin test or blood test only or if you are being treated for tuberculosis infection, wait until treatment is successfully completed before donating.

Pregnancy, Nursing

Following pregnancy, the deferral period should last as many months as the duration of the pregnancy.

It is not advisable to donate blood while breast-feeding. Following childbirth, the deferral period is at least 9 months (as for pregnancy) and until 3 months after your baby is significantly weaned (i.e. getting most of his/her nutrition from solids or bottle feeding).

Yes, the hepatitis B vaccine is very safe and effective. In fact, it is the first “anti-cancer vaccine” because it can protect you from hepatitis B, which is the cause of 80% of all liver cancer in the world. It only takes 4 shots to protect yourself and those you love against hepatitis B for a lifetime.

No. You cannot get hepatitis B from the vaccine because it does not contain any live virus or blood products. The vaccine is made from a synthetic yeast product in a laboratory. The most common side effects are redness and soreness in the arm where the shot is given.

After negative screening 1st dose of the hepatitis B vaccine is given at any time. The 2nd & 3rd dose is carried out in the subsequent 2 months. The booster dose is given after 1 year of 1st dose.

No, there is no need to restart the series. If the series is interrupted after the first dose, the second dose should be given as soon as possible, and the third dose at least 2 months after the second. If only the third dose is delayed, it should be given as soon as possible.

If it has been years since you have been vaccinated, you may need or may request an HBV surface antibody blood test to confirm that you are still protected. A person is considered protected if they have a positive anti-HBs or HBsAb test result greater than 10 mIU/mL. Sometimes these test results are under 10 and there is concern whether these low levels will still provide protection against HBV. Anti-HBs or HBsAb test results can decrease over time, but an individual can still be protected even if the test results are less than 10.

If your test results are low, your doctor may recommend a booster shot or a repeat of the series. If you confirm you completed the vaccine series, you can get a booster dose of the vaccine. Your surface antibody level will be tested again 1 or 2 months after the booster. If the blood test result is greater than 10, then you are protected and will not require an additional booster shot in the future. (Ongoing studies show continued immunity for 30 years) If a booster shot does not result in a level greater than 10, then complete the remaining two doses of the vaccine series and recheck the levels again after 1-2 months. Retain a copy of the titer test as proof of immunity.

People who have a current infection or have recovered from a past infection receive no benefit from the HBV vaccine series, though there is no risk of receiving the vaccine series.

The hepatitis A vaccine is safe and effective and given as 2 shots, 6 months apart. Both shots are needed for long-term protection.

Yes, the hepatitis A vaccine is safe. No serious side effects have been reported from the hepatitis A vaccine. Soreness at the injection site is the most common side effect reported. As with any medicine, there is always a small risk that a serious problem could occur after someone gets the vaccine. However, the potential risks associated with hepatitis A are much greater than the potential risks associated with the hepatitis A vaccine. Since the licensure of the first hepatitis A vaccine in 1995, millions of doses of hepatitis A vaccine have been given worldwide.

If the second dose has been delayed (more than 6 months since the first dose was given), the second, or last dose, should be given as soon as possible. The first dose does not need to be given again.

If you are determined to have the hepatitis A virus, there is no treatment, and no vaccine is needed as the disease provides lifetime immunity.

Yes, you should still be protected and there is no need for a booster.

It is given intramuscularly as a single dose.

It is given intramuscularly as a single dose.