Updated at: 17-06-2022 - By: Sienna Lewis

Platelet donations take how long? Donating platelets might take anything from 30 minutes to three hours. However, before we go any further, here is a quick primer on how to collect various blood components, such as plasma and platelets.

Apheresis treats platelets, red blood cells, and plasma, the three types of blood components that it treats.

Apheresis is a medical procedure in which a machine is attached to your body and used to collect and sort out the blood components stated above, and then returns those that are no longer needed to you. A sterile tubing kit that carries your blood ensures that you won’t get sick after giving your blood. Regardless, most people only require one type of blood component, and this article will focus on the time it takes to donate platelets. It is our sincere hope that this post may inspire you to make a donation and help someone in need!

What are Platelets?

Platelets are blood cells that aid in preventing blood clots from forming in the body. After an injury, platelets gather at the location of the rip to help rebuild the blood vessel. After the platelets activate plasma-forming chemicals, the wound heals.

Pin on Blog Projects Completed

Why is there always a need for platelets?

When storing platelets, keep them at room temperature for 5-7 days. Frozen plasma may be stored for up to a year, and frozen red cells can be stored for 42 days. Because of this, platelet donations are continually in demand. It is imperative that we collect new platelets on a regular basis in order to keep up with the demand of our patients. Because of this, platelets can be given up to 24 times a year, or seven times a week on average.

Learning What Plasmapheresis Is

A plasmapheresis procedure is the first step in understanding how long a platelet donation takes. Plasmapheresis is a procedure that removes only the plasma from the blood (the liquid portion.) Plasma is commonly administered to patients in an emergency or traumatic situation in order to reduce bleeding.

It is necessary to be eligible to donate whole blood before you are able to donate plasma to another. The four most prevalent blood types are A, B, AB, and O. Different blood types can be used by plasma donors who have the blood type AB; however, other plasma donors can only use the same kind of blood. This has led to an increased demand for AB plasma, which is now widely available. There’s always the opportunity to donate plasma again every 28 days.

How Many Hours A Platelet Donation Take Up

In terms of time, how long does it take to donate platelets? Platelet donation takes about three hours from beginning to end. About 30 minutes will be needed to complete the health history form and have your machine ready for you. There is a refreshment room where you can relax for the following two hours after donating money.

It takes time to separate platelets from the rest of the blood and collect them. Platelets and other fluids are removed from your blood, which is then returned to you. You can relax, watch a movie, or listen to music while the plasma collectors collect your plasma. In a matter of hours, you’ll have donated enough platelets to benefit up to three people. However, you may assume that it takes up a lot of time, but it’s more complicated than that.

Platelet giving is a popular way for blood donors to unwind and save lives at the same time. Whole blood or Apheresis platelets, on the other hand, have a limited shelf life of just five days. For 42 days, you can keep whole blood red cells in the refrigerator. Regardless, you may read more about the blood donation program here. After that, we’ll go into the “commonly asked questions” section.

Frequently Asked Questions About Platelet Donation

What is Plasmapheresis? How long does it take? Now that you have the answers to these questions, let’s learn more about platelet donation by going over the most often asked ones. Continue reading to learn more!

#1. What is the role of platelets?

A blood cell called a platelet aids in the formation of clots and the halting of bleeding. Many people with cancer, chronic ailments, and catastrophic accidents rely on them for survival and treatment. Every fifteen seconds, a platelet transfusion is necessary. After then, new donors will be needed every day until your platelets expire, which is a sad fact of life.

Platelet donation is encouraged because of this. Why blood donation is necessary is a good place to start in order to understand why you should consider and try to volunteer.

#2. How can we benefit from donating our platelet?

Knowing you’re helping cancer sufferers is a wonderful feeling. Donating a platelet can provide enough platelets for up to three people. Many doctors and hospitals favor platelet transfusions for patients who require them. When it comes to donating blood, there are a number of reasons why some people prefer platelet donation to whole blood donation.

In exchange for your platelets, you’ll receive fluids and red blood cells, which some donors say makes them feel less lethargic following the donation process. Blood donors often report feeling satisfied and fulfilled since they know they saved someone’s life through platelet donation.

#3. Is there any discomfort?

At least for the time being. It is time to uncover your arm’s inner workings by pinching its delicate underside. When the needle is inserted into each of your arms, you’ll experience a tingling sensation. Donors may prefer platelet donation to whole blood donation since it requires a smaller needle and is less painful.

Some donors may experience chills as a result of fluids being returned to them. Use the blankets provided to keep warm. A tingling sensation may also be felt by certain donors. This small sensitivity to the anticoagulant used when the blood is returned to your body can be swiftly reduced by calcium.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you will be prescribed a calcium supplement. But don’t worry, you’ll get treatment from medical personnel! The article “What is apheresis donation?” might be of interest to you now that we are nearing the end.


Why do patients need platelets?

In order for blood to clot normally, platelets must be present in sufficient numbers. Platelets must be transfused within five days following donation, which necessitates a daily supply for hospitals.

Patients are frequently treated with platelet-rich plasma (PRP).

  • Patients who have been diagnosed with cancer
  • Injured individuals
  • With blood diseases,
  • Patients who have undergone a marrow transplant

What’s it like to donate platelets?

Platelet donations are similar to whole blood donations in terms of how they make you feel. A new, sterile, single-use needle is used to draw a little amount of blood from your arm. The centrifuge spins the blood to separate the platelets from the rest of the blood. A separate bag is used to collect platelets, while the rest of your blood is returned to your body. Platelets are produced by repeating this process numerous times.

For platelet donations, you must refrain from taking aspirin or anything containing aspirin for 48 hours prior to the donation.

Can’t you take platelets from my whole blood donation?

Yes. Platelets can be obtained from whole blood donations, however by donating platelets using automated technology, you can provide up to six or ten times as many platelets as you would by donating whole blood. For a single therapy, a patient requiring platelets will need that number. One platelet donor is all that is needed to offer treatment for one patient instead of six or ten blood donors.

How long does it take to donate platelets?

When registering, please allow at least two hours for the entire process, including registration and refreshments.

Is it safe to donate platelets?

Your blood is never in contact with the equipment used to collect your platelet donation at any point during the platelet collection process. Every piece of equipment used to collect your platelets is new and hygienic. All of the disposable kit is thrown away after use.

You can donate platelets along with plasma.

We can get plasma from your platelet donation as well. Albumin, gamma globulin, anti-hemophilic factor, and other blood-clotting factors make up around 7 percent of plasma’s protein content, with the remaining 1 percent being made up of salts of minerals and carbohydrates, lipids, and hormones. To keep blood pressure stable and aid in clotting, plasma is essential. Because of this, it is essential in the treatment of burns, shock, and bleeding disorders. patients.

Platelet Donation Procedure Hospital in Mumbai, India – Kokilaben Hospital

If I donate platelets, where do they go and who do they help?

  • Hospitals are constantly in need of platelets.
  • It is promptly analyzed and packed for delivery to a hospital once you donate platelets. In most cases, platelets are transfused within three days of being donated.
  • Approximately 2 million platelets are transfused in the United States each year.
  • Platelets are needed by someone in the United States every 15 seconds.
    • Patients with cancer rely on platelets for the energy and stamina they need to combat the disease. A common side effect of cancer treatment is a decreased platelet count. Because platelets help blood clot, cancer patients who do not receive a platelet transfusion risk life-threatening hemorrhage.
    • When patients have severe procedures or are injured, platelets can aid in their recovery. Patients who have undergone significant surgery or sustained a serious accident may require platelet transfusions to replenish platelets lost to hemorrhage. During their recovery, platelets keep patients alive.
    • Patients with blood problems or transplants rely on platelets for support. These individuals benefit greatly from platelet transfusions, which enable them remain active and healthy for longer periods of time.
  • There is a constant demand for new platelet donors because they must be used within five days. That’s why we need your help.

How long does it take to donate platelets?

  • Platelet donation takes roughly three hours from start to end. For the health history questionnaire to be completed and for the machine to be set up for you, it will take about 30 minutes. After that, you may plan to spend roughly two hours in the donation area, followed by a break in the refreshment area.
  • In order to separate and collect all of the blood components, it takes time. Blood and other fluids are taken from you and then returned to you during the procedure.
  • You may unwind, enjoy a movie, or play music while making a donation. You’ll have donated enough platelets in a few hours to help up to three different patients.
  • For many donors, platelet donation is a way to decompress from the pressures of daily life while also making a difference in the lives of others.

What are the benefits to donating platelets?

  • It’s rewarding to know that you’re making a difference in cancer sufferers’ lives.
  • When a platelet donation is made, it can supply a patient with a full dose of platelets. This method is preferred by many doctors and hospitals for patients who need a platelet transfusion.
  • Platelet donations use a smaller needle than standard whole blood donations, thus some donors find it more comfortable to give their blood this way.
  • Some platelet donors report feeling less fatigued after their donation because they receive fluids and red blood cells back.
  • For many donors, platelet donation is a way to decompress from the pressures of daily life while also making a difference in the lives of others.

How safe is donating platelets?

  • Donating platelets is a safe process.
  • Platelet donation is a simple and safe procedure.
  • A new, sterile needle is used for each donation and then destroyed.
  • People who have donated platelets may experience lightheadedness, dizziness or an upset stomach, as well as discomfort and bruises in places where the needles were used.

Does it hurt?

  • For the time being, at least. Make a fist with your arm’s underside. You’ll feel a pinch like that when the needle is placed into each of your arms.
  • Platelet donations use a smaller needle than standard whole blood donations, thus some donors find it more comfortable to give their blood this way.
  • Some donors get goosebumps when they receive their fluids back. It is possible to keep warm by using blankets that are accessible. Donors may also experience a faint tingle. Calcium can quickly reduce this moderate reaction to the anticoagulant used when the blood is returned to your body. Tums®, a calcium supplement, will be given to you if you have this sensation.

How often can I donate platelets?

Every seven days, up to 24 times a year, platelets can be donated. Every platelet donor may make a huge difference in the lives of others if they donated at least 10 times each year.

How can I prepare for my platelet donation?

  • You need an appointment to donate platelets. Schedule online, through the free Blood Donor App or by calling 1-800-RED CROSS.
  • An appointment is required in order to donate platelets. Schedule online, through the Blood Donor App, or by phone at 1-800-RED CROSS.
  • Please bring a Red Cross donor card or photo ID, or use the Blood Donor App to access your information, if you have it.
  • Prior to your meeting, refrain from taking any aspirin products. The earliest you can give platelets is Thursday if you consume aspirin products on Monday.
  • Spend at least three hours on the donation chair to ensure a complete donation.
  • Give yourself plenty of time to recuperate before donating.
  • For a few days previous to the donation, make sure you’re getting lots of calcium-rich foods and beverages.
  • You can donate platelets up to 24 times each year, every seven days.
  • The eligibility requirements, such as restrictions on travel and medicine, can be found in the following sections.

Who is eligible to donate platelets?

  • When a person is 16 or 17, depending on where they live, they may be eligible to donate platelets if they are in generally excellent condition and meet weight and height requirements.
  • Please review our eligibility requirements as some states require parental consent. You can also find more information about travel and medication restrictions.
  • Review our eligibility criteria as certain states demand parental permission. Additionally, you’ll be able to learn more about any travel or medicine restrictions.
  • Prior to your meeting, refrain from taking any aspirin products. The earliest you can give platelets is Thursday if you consume aspirin products on Monday.
  • Platelet donation has the same eligibility conditions as whole blood donation. To give platelets, you’ll need to meet the minimum blood donation guidelines.
  • Recently, it has been shown that women who have previously been pregnant are more likely to possess antibodies that are thought to sometimes create post-transfusion difficulties for blood and platelet recipients. The Red Cross will question new female platelet donors about their pregnancies and test women who have been pregnant for these antibodies until these problems are better understood. Antibody positive donors may be recommended to donate whole blood or Power Red instead of plasma, which has no effect on the donor’s health.

What blood types should donate platelets?

  • Platelet donation is encouraged for all blood types, save for those with type O negative and type B negative. By continuing to donate whole blood or Power Red, type O negative and type B negative can have the most impact on patients in need
  • Donating plasma is the best way to help someone with blood type AB. Like platelet donations, it is available at several American Red Cross Donation Centers. Compared to donating blood or platelets, you can contribute up to three times as much plasma via plasma donation, which allows you to have a greater effect with fewer donations.

Can I donate plasma at the same time as platelets?

  • It’s possible to donate platelets if you have type AB blood and your local American Red Cross Donation Center doesn’t currently accept plasma-only donations. Donating platelets and plasma at the same time is possible.
  • In the United States, type AB blood is only found in 4% of the population, making it highly uncommon.
  • If you’re a Type AB donor, you can donate plasma to any patient, regardless of their blood type.

Who Needs Platelets?

It is necessary to do platelet transfusions in order to get many life-saving treatments. Patients undergoing open heart surgery, cancer patients, recipients of organ or bone marrow transplants, trauma sufferers, and those through chemotherapy all require platelet transfusions to ensure their survival. Platelet donations are constantly needed because they can only be preserved for five days. There are tens of thousands of individuals who require platelet transfusions each year.

  • 6 beds for a patient undergoing heart surgery
  • Patient with Burns, 20 beds
  • Thirty Units of Organ Transplantation
  • Patient, 120 units of Bone Marrow Transplant

What is Apheresis?

For those who want to donate only specific blood components, such as platelets, apheresis (ay-fur-ee-sis) is an option. After apheresis, the donor receives everything but the blood component that was removed during the operation.

What Is It Like to Give Platelets for the First Time?

Who Can be an Apheresis Donor?

As long as you match the criteria for blood donation, you may be able to donate platelets. Donors of apheresis must:

  • age of majority is 18 years or older
  • be physically fit
  • At least 114 lbs. in weight
  • within 48 hours of the donation, you must not have taken aspirin or other aspirin-containing products.

Are Apheresis Donations Safe?

Yes. In order to ensure the safety of the procedure, qualified staff monitors each donation. Platelets are only taken from a small portion of your blood, so there is no risk of excessive bleeding. Within 72 hours, your body will replace the donated platelets. A disease can’t be transmitted via donating because of the sterility of the instruments used to collect the blood (needles, tubing, collection bags).

How Does the Procedure Work?

This procedure involves having blood taken from your arm and having it processed via an automated cell separator. A sterile kit within the machine spins your blood to remove platelets. The remainder of your blood is subsequently reintroduced into your body via an arm vein.

How Long Does it Take?

For most people, the Apheresis donation procedure will take between 70 minutes and two hours, depending on their body mass and height. Even if you don’t want to do anything, you can watch TV, listen to music, or just sit back and enjoy the experience.

How Can I Become an Apheresis Donor?

Apheresis Program at Bloodworks Northwest can be reached at 425-453-5098 or 1-800-398-7888.

Additional Donor Information on Apheresis Procedures

Platelets aid in the halting of blood loss. To guarantee that you have enough platelets to safely donate to another person, your platelet count will be evaluated with each donation you make. We’ll let you know if your platelet count is abnormally low or high following your initial donation.

Platelets are extracted from your blood using a citrate-based anticoagulant to keep the blood moving. To prevent blood clots, citrate binds calcium briefly.

During the collection process, your blood is mixed with a liquid called a “anticoagulant” to prevent it from clotting. The anticoagulant can cause numbness and tingling in the fingers or around the mouth when the blood is returned to you. If you notice any tingling or numbness in your hands or feet, you should immediately notify the machine operator. Calcium can alleviate these symptoms, but if left untreated, they might worsen and lead to painful muscle cramps. Your body will use the citrate as a source of energy and metabolize it.


To sum up, “How long does a platelet donation take?” was answered above. A platelet donation can take up to three hours to complete. The effort may take some time, but the reward will be priceless: you will have given someone a second chance at life! Let us know if you need anything more.