Updated at: 30-05-2022 - By: Sienna Lewis

Trying to figure out what apheresis blood donation is exhausting. And you’re still waiting for an answer on this. Is that so? We’re here to help! apheresis is a type of blood donation that collects blood components such as platelets, plasma and red blood cells.

Donating blood has been proven time and time again to be a life-saving procedure. To reaffirm and underline, blood and organ donations can save the lives of many individuals.

There’s a lot to learn about this subject. All you need to know about apheresis donation is here. In the end of this essay, we will tell you everything you need to know about apheresis blood donation.


Among the four components of human blood are the red, white, platelet, and plasma-containing cells (RBCs). Apheresis is a procedure in which one of these components is removed or changed in order to treat an ailment. In order to separate blood into its components, a centrifuge is used to do so.

A Healthy Education in Blood Donation: 10 Things You Might Not Know | Walden University

In the Transfusion Medicine Service at Yale Medicine, a team of doctors treats more than 1,000 patients each year. We frequently engage in clinical trials to learn about new therapeutic apheresis applications at Yale Medicine, which uses the most up-to-date technology in the industry.

How does apheresis work?

There are four components to traditional donation: whole blood, red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets and plasma. Components are kept in reserve and administered to patients as needed, such as after surgery, an accident, a sickness, or chemotherapy.

While the donor remains attached to the separation device, apheresis separates the blood into these components. Density is used to separate the donor’s entire blood into its components by a whirling centrifuge or a rotating belt.

Transfusion Service director Edward Snyder adds, “Red cells are the densest, so they go to the bottom.” “White blood cells, platelets, and plasma are the next in density.”

By inserting a thin needle into a vein in the arm, the apheresis technician removes the blood components that aren’t needed and places them in a collection bag. Blood is drawn and returned via a central line (a catheter placed into an upper shoulder vein) for some individuals.

What is donor apheresis?

Using an apheresis machine, a healthy individual contributes blood, which is set to collect the required blood component — red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets, or plasma. For patients in need, the component might be kept and given out by hospitals. Donor facilities and mobile blood drives like those organized by the Connecticut chapter of the American Red Cross collect the apheresis samples.

Blood donation through whole blood donation takes longer, but it is less painful and has more benefits than donor apheresis.

Red blood cells can be separated using machine apheresis and the “non-targeted” plasma or platelets can be returned to the donor. Centers can collect twice as many red blood cells as they would in a whole-blood donation by using this method of donation. As many platelets as can be retrieved from four to six whole blood donations can be given using platelet apheresis.

Frozen or processed apheresis plasma can be made into pharmaceuticals like gamma globulin by treating and processing donated plasma. Platelets can be given as frequently as every seven days, however donors must wait up to 16 weeks between double apheresis red cell contributions and platelet donations.

The Process Of Apheresis Blood Donation

A “cell separator” is the device used to collect the donor’s entire blood for apheresis donation. Spins in the machine separate all the constituent parts of the plasma, which is then collected in high-end plastic bags for donation.

A needle is inserted into the donor’s body and only the desired components of blood (red blood cells, white blood cells, and plasma) are extracted.

Apheresis blood donation is exactly what it sounds like. Compared to six blood donations, apheresis platelets produce far more platelets in the recipient’s body. Patients’ immune systems can be maintained via Apheresis blood donation. Apheresis blood donation helps patients with cancer, bone marrow transplants, and leukemia.


Platelets are a type of blood cell. Platelets, plasma, red cells, and white blood cells make up the majority of the blood’s constituents. Platelets are cells that aid in preventing blood loss. It’s a waste. Platelets are all we need to stay alive as humans. A healthy and long life is especially important for patients with cancer, those who have received organ or bone marrow transplants, those who have suffered severe injuries, and many people who have undergone cardiac surgery.

National blood bank seeking more donations - Khmer Times

How Much Time It Takes For The Process Of Apheresis?

The amount of time it takes to do an apheresis blood donation is mostly determined on the size and weight of the donor. Doctors and professionals conducting the research note that apheresis takes between 70 minutes and two hours on average. Preparation for a blood donation via apheresis is critical. Do you know what to do? Read on if you haven’t already; Apheresis contains the following steps:

  • The process of registering as a donor.
  • Interview for Donor Health
  • Juices are a good source of nutrition.
  • Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables that are good for you

While donating apheresis, donors can relax in front of the television, listen to music, or watch a movie.

What Are The Benefits Of Apheresis Versus A Whole Blood Donation?

Compare apheresis to a full blood donation to see what the differences are. The following are the details:

Whole blood donation

Another type of blood donation is known as a “whole blood” (WB) donation, in which a person donates one unit of their complete blood supply.

Apheresis blood collection

Are you wondering about apheresis blood donation? Your question has been answered. Let’s take a closer look at it. In the case of apheresis blood collection, blood is given away. The amount of blood a donor gives in this technique is more than that given in a normal blood donation. Compared to regular blood donations, apheresis donation has the potential to save thousands of lives. Apheresis blood donors have a longer life expectancy than those who donate whole blood.

Benefits Of Apheresis Blood Donation

Are you curious about blood donation by apheresis? As a result, below is the solution to your query. Talk about it some more. Acquiring blood by apheresis is a form of blood donation It is more common for a donor to give more blood in this way than to give whole blood or normal blood. Thousands more lives can be saved with apheresis donation than through routine blood donations. In apheresis blood donation, the life expectancy of recipients is longer than in whole blood donation.

  • In each donation, more blood points can be donated by apheresis donors, resulting in greater benefits for more patients.
  • Controlled apheresis collection is dependent on donor and recipient blood types. According on the donor’s ability to donate blood and the patient’s medical state, apheresis can be performed.
  • When a blood donor gives blood, only the components that are needed are taken from the blood and the rest is returned to the donor body via a needle insertion.

Consider reading up on the adverse effects of giving plasma.

What is therapeutic apheresis?

Patients with diseases caused by aberrant cellular or plasma-based blood components can have therapeutic apheresis performed by the Transfusion Medicine Service. Afterwards, the normal blood components are reintroduced to the patient’s veins, and the aberrant blood is identified and removed.

Dr. Synder speculates that an aberrant protein buildup in the blood plasma of some individuals may be to blame. To replenish the lost volume, a solution of 5% human albumin made from healthy donors can be used to separate and remove the aberrant plasma.

A leukapheresis or a plateletapheresis can be required if there are too many white blood cells or too many platelets.

It’s possible to replace a patient’s red blood cells that have been destroyed with those of a healthy donor, says Dr. Snyder.

What are some of the conditions that may be treated with apheresis?

Having sickle cell trait. Red blood cells in this hereditary disease are improperly shaped (like sickles) and are unable to adequately transport oxygen throughout the body. In the event of a sickle cell crisis, erythrocytapheresis can be used to extract the sickled red blood cells and replace them with healthy ones from a blood donor.

Leukemia. Having too many white blood cells can cause the blood to thicken and affect organ function in patients with leukemia. Blood that has aberrant white blood cells removed is returned to the patient during leukapheresis.

Myasthenia gravis, or MG. There is an aberrant antibody accumulation in the blood, which disrupts nerve and muscle communication. Plasmapheresis is a type of apheresis in which plasma is extracted from the patient’s blood and replaced with a protein solution containing 5% human albumin.

Purpura thrombocytopenicum thrombocytopenia (TTP). Due to the absence of a vital blood enzyme, this uncommon blood condition causes platelet aggregates to accumulate all over the body. A combination of plasmapheresis and the addition of normal donor plasma, which already contains the enzyme needed for recovery, is the most effective treatment.

Here's what you need to know about donating blood

How is apheresis used for stem cell transplants?

Red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets can all be formed from stem cells in the bone marrow. Patients with blood malignancies like leukemia, multiple myeloma, and lymphoma can have their stem cells removed through a process called apheresis and then given back to them after undergoing treatment.

Growth factor medicine is administered to the patient before leukapheresis in order to enhance the amount of stem cells, which are then isolated from other blood cells and returned to them. They are kept frozen until the patient is done with chemotherapy or radiation.

Dr. Snyder explains, “When we return the stem cells.” During a stem cell transplant, these stem cells can proliferate and repopulate the bone marrow of the patient. Fortunately, most of these cells are able to regrow.”

It has been a long time since we’ve successfully collaborated with medical oncology to do this treatment. Many types of blood cancers are now treated with it as a regular procedure.”

What can a patient expect when undergoing apheresis?

It can take anywhere from two to four hours, depending on the patient’s sickness and the component that has to be collected, for the procedure to be completed. There may be some side effects with apheresis including discomfort in the arm where the needle is put, lightheadedness, perspiration, or an increase in blood pressure, but it is normally painless.

Apheresis is more time-consuming and requires two needles in each arm compared to routine blood donation, which may raise the risk of these side effects, says Dr. Snyder of the Cleveland Clinic. He asserts, however, that apheresis patients in the vast majority do not experience any negative consequences from the procedure.

An allergic reaction or fever may occur when a patient receives donor components like red blood cells as part of the treatment, but Dr. Snyder stresses that patients are followed extremely closely and any bad effects are swiftly discovered.

It is possible to repeat treatment once a week or once a month, or multiple times a week, if necessary. Apheresis therapy is usually used in conjunction with other drugs and therapies, such as steroids or chemotherapy.

What makes Yale Medicine’s approach to apheresis unique?

Dr. Snyder says Yale Medicine adheres to the highest medical safety standards and has a staff of Blood Bank physicians on call at all times because it is a huge research facility. It is our goal to keep our apheresis equipment at the cutting edge of therapeutic apheresis research so that we may better serve our patients with a wide range of ailments.

Apheresis treatments are typically scheduled throughout the day, although Yale Medicine’s clinic is open around the clock for emergencies.

“Our staff is committed to assuring patient safety, patient comfort and proper medical care,” adds Dr. Snyder. When you need us, we’ll be right here for you.

Requirements Of Apheresis Donation

If you’ve made up your mind to donate blood via apheresis. A few conditions must be met by the donor in order to be eligible for apheresis donation, and those conditions include:

  • Donors must weigh no less than 115 pounds in order to donate.
  • His parents have given their blessing for him to be a blood donor at the age of 16.
  • The donor needs to be in good health in order to participate.
  • Donor platelets will be counted prior to donation if they meet all of the criteria for apheresis blood donation.
  • If you are eligible to donate blood and have met all the conditions, you must wait 36 hours before taking any aspirin.

Is it safe to use apheresis? Yes. Both the donor and the recipient are protected by this method. Apheresis donation is overseen by a team of experienced staff members who monitor donors throughout the process. Because only a tiny number of platelets are measured, there is no risk of bleeding. New platelets are produced in 48 hours and replace the donated ones. The following items are required for apheresis:

  • Needles of a smaller size
  • Tubes
  • Bags made of polyethylene terephthalate

Take aware of the fact that used equipment is not available for donation to another organization. Why is blood donation so important? Find out more by reading this article.

What is apheresis blood collection?

The donation of blood through apheresis is called ABC. In place of one pint of whole blood, ABC donors just donate the blood components that are needed for that day’s patients. Using only a single needle, a remarkable machine separates the constituent parts of your blood, keeps some of them, and then returns the rest to you. Because it’s so effective, it’s an excellent method for immediately aiding hospitalized patients. We can support the community by donating the right amount of blood components at each donation, which will help keep these life-saving items readily available.

What are the requirements for apheresis blood collection?

Each donation is based on the donor’s gender, height, weight, and hemoglobin count on the day of the donation. It is necessary to follow these guidelines in order to protect the welfare of organ donors. One of our staff members will use the blood collection machine and their knowledge to identify what type of donation you can safely provide on that day. Your initial visit to ABC may lead to an opportunity for you to make an ABC donation!

Why are the requirements different for women, men and nonbinary donors?

Because, even though they weigh the same, men and women have different total blood volumes (TBV). No more than 15 percent of a patient’s TBV should be drained at any given time, according to industry standards. Our apheresis machines use gender, height, weight, and hemoglobin to calculate TBV.

It’s A Wrap!

My dear friends, thank you for sticking with me to the finish of this article. We couldn’t wait to tell you everyone what apheresis blood donation is! To understand why my blood donation was denied and how organ donation saves lives, it may be a good idea to learn more about it.