Blood Transfusion:

Blood Transfusion:

Blood Transfusion is the process of transferring blood, plasma, and other blood products from one person to the other. The person who gives blood is called the donor and the person who receives blood is called the recipient. Blood transfusion is done to people when there is loss of blood due to an injury or a trauma, in case of a surgery, or when the patient is anemic (See: Anemia) or suffering from any other condition. This is done via the intravenous route and is a safe procedure. A small needle is inserted in the vein and intravenous line is placed into the blood vessels. Then, blood is either is drawn or sent through the vein. Blood should be transfused to a recipient from the donor only if they have the same group (See: Blood group). It even depends upon factors like compatibility, and Rh factor. Prior to transfusion, samples of blood from the donor are tested for suitability to the recipient. The samples from the donor are separated into their components of red blood cells, platelets, plasma, albumin protein, immunoglobulins, and others. Blood is tested for infections like hepatitis B, hepatitis C, HIV, and others. The donor blood is also tested for its blood group and compatibility. The recipient’s blood is also tested with an antibody panel. Then, a crossmatch is performed where the donor’s red blood cells and the recipient’s blood serum are mixed and incubated. If hemolysis (destruction of red blood cells) occurs, then both the blood types are incompatible and should not be transfused. If transfusion still occurs, it can lead to adverse reactions like allergic reactions, anaphylactic shock, acute lung injury, and many others. People who undergo such blood transfusions show symptoms like back pain, chills, fainting, dizziness, shortness of breath and chills. It can even lead to acute kidney failure. The blood group O negative is a universal donor and this blood can be transfused to a person with any other group. Those with AB group are universal recipients and can take any type of blood. In people with diabetes, those whose condition is well controlled with diet, exercise and medication can donate blood; however, they are advised to consult their doctors before blood donation. As there is inconclusive evidence on blood donation for people with type 1 diabetes, it is not advised. When it comes to receiving blood, people with diabetes might experience a spike in their HbA1c levels due to the presence of glucose in the donor’s blood. This however is an issue that is being debated in the medical circles as donor red blood cells are also known to dilute the diabetic’s HbA1c. Added to that, the storage conditions of the red blood cells in the blood banks might also add to the glycation of the stored blood. Though the debate has not been resolved with conclusive evidence, it can be stated that HbA1c is an unreliable test for people with diabetes who have had blood transfusions.

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