Robin’s Blood Donation Experience

Giving blood is one of the most selfless acts that anyone can perform. Each and everyday, hundreds of people are in need of blood for a variety of reasons. That is why I am so passionate about this. As I have previosly stated in another blog, blood banks were created after World War II all across the United States. The process was made fairly simple for everyone to participate in. I hope that by watching my donation experience, everyone will believe in this as much as I do. Life South in Atlanta is an incredible organization. They have an office location, which is where I went, or they have Blood mobiles that travel to different schools, offices and any other organization that would like to host a blood drive. The technician who who administered my donation was a pleasure to be around. As you can hear, she let me ask her questions as well as offering exactly what she was doing each and every step of the way. If you’re nervous about the process, or scared of having a needle stuck in your arm, someone of her nature would make you feel relaxed and let you realize how important it is.

I did face a few challenges during this process. I was using iMovie on the iPad to record the experience, something which I had never done before. With the help of my daughter, who did the filming, it all turned out great. I then had to edit the video from 10.5 minutes down to approximately 6, this was the most challenging. Deciding what to keep and then where to enter in subtitles so that the video flowed together was an experience. After several hours of this, I believe that I finally put together a video that showed my passion for this cause as well as information that would allow other people do want to go and donate.

Knowing all the challenges people face on a daily basis for a variety of reasons, donating blood is one that you can do and feel confident that you have helped out someone in need. I hope that by watching my experience, it makes you go to LifeSouth.org and set an appointment to donate.

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Too Much Truth – Bombing In Boston

This was a senseless tragedy, my heart goes out to the families. At a time like this, the one thing that everyone can do is donate blood to help the injured #ENGLCE

CBS Atlanta

Today on Too Much Truth, DB followed the breaking news out of Boston today. During the Boston Marathon, two bombs exploded near the finish line, killing three people and injuring more that 125 others. It happened today around 2 P.M., as runners were finishing their race. According to CBS News correspondent Bob Orr, two bombs were inside trash cans near the viewing area close to the finish line. Two other explosive devices were also found, however police were able to disable the bombs before they exploded. Another incident was reported at John F. Kennedy Library just a few miles away, but it was later reported by officials that it was just a fire and it was not related. Currently, authorities do not have a lead suspect or a motive for the attack.

So with this event, among other tragic events that has taken place, will this make you live in…

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Facts about Blood types

There are many fascinating facts about blood that most people are unaware of. In my opinion, most people know that their blood helps them to exist and they may not give it another thought. Everyone has a different blood type of blood. The 4 groups of blood types are:
Type A
Type B
Type AB
Type O
Your individual blood type is determined by your parents, grandparents and everyone that came before you, in other words, passed down to you.

blood-type

If you do not know your blood type, there is a test that can be performed to advise you what type you have. Testing is performed that is very similar to donating blood. The blood is drawn from either the back of your hand or the inside of you elbow. The site is disinfected, a tourniquet is placed on the upper part of you arm so the vein can ‘pop’ letting the technician know the exact spot to puncture. The needle is inserted and the blood is drawn. Once all the needed blood is in the vial, then needle is removed and the area is again cleansed and covered with a bandage.

Testing is now performed to determine the type. The test is called ABO typing. The blood is mixed with antibodies to check for type A and B, depending on whether or not the cells stick together will determine if the blood interacted with the antibodies. Next, the liquid part of the blood is mixed blood that is known to be type A and type B. Both types A and B have each other’s antibodies while type O has both. These two steps determine what type of blood you have.

These tests are very important because only specific types of blood can be donated to specific types. Please use the link below to view a chart that will detail the type of blood that you have and who you can give to and who you can receive from.

http://chapters.redcross.org/br/northernohio/info/bloodtype.html

Keep in mind that type O is the universal blood type and can be given to everyone

I hope this breakdown helps everyone to know what type of blood they can receive should they need it.

Information obtained at http://www.nlm.nih.gov
http://www.americanredcross.org

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Facts about Anemia

There are many different reasons why you dontate blood and why blood is needed.  One of the main reasons people donate blood is to help others as well as helping out their community.   Even though you may feel healthy and fit, you may be “deferred” from giving blood, this occurs in about 10% of people who are trying to donate.   The most common reason for being deferred is a low blood count.  A low blood count is also referred to as Anemia.  There are some very simple measures that one can take to raise their blood count back to a healthy level.

Starting with discussing the situation with you doctor.  Your doctor will recommend what actions you need to take to bring your count up so that you can successfully donate blood in the future.  He will also try to determine exactly what caused this  to occur.  Knowing why your count is below the normal level will help in many ways.  Some of the reasons for this could be an iron deficiency,vitamin deficiency, or chronic illness.

An iron and vitamin deficiency may be the result of not eating properly.  Iron and vitamins are the nutrients that are found in all the foods that we eat therefore a proper diet is a must.  Iron  supports our muscle proteins, bones and helps to build up our red blood cells.    Your blood carries oxygen from your lungs to all parts of your body which gives you the strength and ability to do your daily routines.  When you do not have enough iron in your blood, it makes you feel tired and weak.  This results in inactivity and can develop into anemia.

Vitamins play a different roll.  A few examples of which vitamins perform different functions are:  B6 and B12 production and maintaining healthy nerves, folic acid assists in making both red and white blood cells.  

Symptoms of anemia may be fatigue, weakness, pale skin, chest pain just to name a few.  One symptom that many people may not be aware of is unusual food craving but specifically ice.  A lot of people constantly chew on ice cubes, whether straight from the ice bin or from the drinks that they have ordered while  in a restaurant, not knowing that this is a symptom of anemia.

One of the tests that your doctor may perform is a CBC blod test, this stands for Complete Blood Count and will advise your doctor what your hematocrit and hemogloblin levels are.  The healthy range depend on age and gender.

Treatment for anemia is as simple as changing your diet.  Eating foods that are high in iron would be easy for most people.  This would include beef, pork, poultry, and fish as these are very high in iron.  Iron is also found in eggs, dairy products and vegetables but this is sometimes harder to absorb the iron from these foods.  If you have a hard time absorbing the iron and vitamins that these foods are giving you, your doctor may prescribe a supplment for you to take as well.

0511-0902-1117-2155_Vitamins_Minerals_and_Supplements_clipart_image

General Heathly Hematocrit & Hemoglobin Values
Female/ Male
Hemoglobin 12.3 – 15.3g/dL 14.0 – 17.4g/dL
Hematocrit 36.0 – 45.0% 41.5 – 50.4%

Reference ranges for illustrative purposes only and may vary by age, ethnic group and pre/postmenopausal females. Perkins S. Wintrobe’s Clinical Hematology. 1998.22

Information obtained from http://www.anemia.org

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PAYING IT FORWARD: HEROES HONOR HEROES AT RICHMOND CUFFS & LADDERS TROPHY CEREMONY

Another reason why everyone should give blood. #ENGLCE

Community Blood Center

ImageRICHMOND, Indiana – It was a day for heroes to honor fellow heroes Wednesday, April 3 at the Richmond Fire Department’s downtown fire station.  RFD ceremoniously received the first Community Blood Center (CBC) “Cuffs and Ladders” Blood Drive challenge trophy from retired captain Mel Ponder, who spent 36 years fighting fires and saving lives – and the last 10 battling a life-threatening blood disease.

Mel was the guest of honor at the blood drive, held Saturday, March 30 at the Richmond CBC Donor Center.  It featured a friendly competition between the Richmond Police and Fire Departments to recruit the most blood donors. The fire fighters claimed the trophy by receiving the most “votes.”  There were special t-shirts, refreshments, emergency vehicles, mascots (SAL the Bloodhound, McGruff the Crime Dog and Sparky the Fire Dog), Mel’s photos and turn-out gear on display, and a live radio remote broadcast by KICKS 96.

The…

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Putting a Face on Blood Donation

Donated blood is used in a multitude of ways. Patients ranging from those with cancer and leukemia, to burn victims and organ transplants all are in need of donated blood. Each situation requires different amounts and types of blood. Leukemia, for example, can require between 2-6 pints of red blood cells and 6-8 units of platelets daily for 2-4 weeks.

People involved in serious accidents, such as car crashes, could need tremendous amounts of blood. When supermodel Niki Taylor was in a car crash in Atlanta in 2001, she needed over 100 blood transfusions. This equalled blood from over 300 donors. Recently, Niki Taylor was provided the opportunity to meet some of these donors at the Metropolitan Atlanta Chapter of the American Red Cross earlier in March. The donors had no idea who they were meeting, just that it was someone who had recieved their blood over 10 years ago. They were shocked that it was a celebrity, but it did not matter to them who it was, only that their blood helped save a life. Taylor was originally treated at Grady Memorial Hospital in downtown Atlanta.

niki taylor

Check out the below link on ajc.com to see Niki Taylor thanking her donors:
http://www.ajc.com/videos/entertainment/niki-taylor-thanks-blood-donors/vt4pb/

Information found on http://www.utahblood.org as well as http://www.redcrossblood.org

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What to Expect When Donating Blood

If you’ve never donated blood before, it can be intimidating. Knowing what to expect can alleviate those fears. The first, and least intimidating, step is to eat a meal consisting of good proteins and have plenty of water the day before and prior to the actual donation.

When you arrive on the donation site, you will need to present a picture id OR two other forms of identification. Another vital piece of information you will need to have with you is a list of current medications. Vitamins and supplements should also be documented when making this list. Once you are signed in and have produced all the necessary documents, a staff member will take your vitals (temperature, pulse, blood pressure, and hemoglobin level). You are ready to give blood!

The process of giving blood takes only about 8-10 minutes. A certified phlebotomist, such as a nurse, will tie a turniquet around your arm, above your elbow, and then will disinfect the site. They will then draw a pint of your blood. Once your blood is drawn, you will recieve a refreshment (cookies!) and should relax for 10-15 minutes.

Giving Blood

Information found on http://www.redcrossblood.org

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