The short shelf life of platelets – just 5 days after they’re collected, tested and processed – also means we need donors every day of the year, including holidays.
Who can donate?
Platelet donation requires additional criteria to ensure you’re a good candidate for this type of donation. Platelet donors must weigh at least 110 pounds.
Men and women who have never been pregnant are ideal candidates for platelet donations. Women who have been pregnant are more likely to have anti-HLA antibodies, which can cause a serious complication for those who receive the platelets.
What’s a donation like?
Platelet donation is done through apheresis, a process in which blood is removed, spun through a machine to remove the needed part, and then returned to the body. The full donation takes about two hours.
Platelets are most often given at donor centers, where we can make donors comfortable with reclining chairs and individual televisions. We’ll also provide plenty of snacks and drinks to keep you feeling strong during your donation.
Because only platelets are removed, donors can give more often – as often as every 7 days.