Automated Apheresis

An Automated Apheresis donation provides the most precious components used when treating cancer patients—platelets and plasma. This technology allows donors to give a larger quantity of specific cells than a standard donation so your donation has a bigger impact. For example, one automated platelet donor produces one complete platelet dose for a patient. Meanwhile, it takes eight whole blood donors pooled together to produce one complete platelet dose.

How long does Automated Apheresis take?

Unlike a regular whole blood donation, a typical platelet donation takes approximately 90-120 minutes to complete. During that time you can relax while watching a movie, listening to music, or visiting with our dedicated and friendly staff. Don’t forget – it’s important to complete the full process time. Your commitment can make the difference between saving a single patient or two patients lives.

Are Automated Apheresis donations safe?

Donor “safety” is the utmost priority at Florida’s Blood Centers. Each procedure is closely monitored by one or more of our trained staff. The collection instruments are designed with numerous donor safety devices. The donor’s blood never comes into direct contact with the instrument. A disposable, one time use, collection set is utilized for the procedure. Anticoagulant (ACD) is used to prevent the blood from clotting during the separation process. This type of anticoagulant is metabolized quickly and does not remain in a donor’s circulation post donation.

Am I eligible to be an Automated Apheresis donor?

Donors must meet the same eligibility requirements as a whole blood donor. In addition, because aspirin affects the sticky function of platelets, apheresis donors are asked not to take aspirin or aspirin-like products (Advil, Motrin or Ibuprofen) 48 hours prior to the scheduled appointment.

Are there any side effects?

Some donors feel a slight tingling around their lips or nose. This is a normal reaction to the anticoagulant used during the collection. The operator can make adjustments that can decrease or eliminate this effect. Some donors feel a slight chill during the donation process. Let our staff know if you are cold. You’ll be warmed up with an extra blanket or heat pack. We want your experience here at Florida’s Blood Centers to be pleasant and comfortable every time!

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