Cholesterol levels from blood donation

Blood donation donations can be low in cholesterol. Donating blood that is low in cholesterol will not harm you. However, your doctor will check your blood levels so that they know if you are at risk of having a heart attack.

Your doctor will also check how much of your blood you need to donate. This is called the blood volume. Donating blood that is too small can result in your body not getting enough oxygen.

The amount of blood you need to donate may depend on the blood type you have. For example, if you are a type O blood donor, you may need to donate at least 2.5 ounces of blood. If you are a type A or B blood donor, you may only need to donate 1 ounce of blood.

If you are a type AB or O blood donor, you may need to donate 3 to 4 ounces of blood. The amount you need to donate depends on your blood type.

If you are a type 0 blood donor, you may need to donate 4 to 8 ounces of blood.

It is important to donate blood as directed by your doctor. You may need to donate more blood if you have a blood type that is too high or low. You may also need to donate blood if you are in the middle of your donation schedule.

What is the average blood donation time?

The average time you can donate blood is 11 minutes. This varies. For example, if you are a type O blood donor, you may be able to donate blood for only 10 minutes. If you are a type AB or type B blood donor, you may be able to donate for up to 10 minutes.

If you are a type A or type B blood donor, you may donate blood for up to 20 minutes.

Blood donation process

Donating blood is a quick process. It will take a few minutes from start to finish.

You will need to make four to five small (less than 1 ounce) blood draw donations. You will use one needle and one syringe to draw blood.

You will most likely need to wait for the blood draw to be complete before you leave the hospital. This may take a few hours.

You will also need to prepare your blood for donation. This can take up to an hour.

If you are a type O blood donor

1. Arrange to have the blood draw completed in a clean room.
2. Place the blood draw container and needle in the draw area.
3. Have someone at a desk ready to give you instructions if you have any questions.
4. Wear a surgical mask to protect yourself from airborne infections like the flu.
5. If you have a stethoscope, place it on the floor and stand with your arms at your sides.
6. Position yourself so that you are standing with your back against the wall.
7. Hold your arms out in front of you at your sides.
8. Position your feet so that you are standing with your toes pointing to the ceiling.
9. Keep your head straight and your eyes open.
10. Look straight ahead and breathe deeply and slowly.
11. As you inhale, pull your arms toward your body until you feel a slight resistance in your chest.
12. As you exhale, you will feel your chest relax.
13. As you exhale your arms will slowly move out and your chest will expand.
14. Keep your arms and chest relaxed, then place your arms down at your sides.
15. Repeat the process with the other arm.
16. As you finish, open your arms and place them down at your sides.
17. If you have a stethoscope, place it on the floor with your arms outstretched and your chest expanded.
18. If you do not have a stethoscope, you will be asked to count aloud while you relax and breathe deeply.
19. After the fourth draw, you will be asked to change your blood draw container.
20. Once the blood draw is complete, you will be asked to put on a gown, gloves, and a face mask.

If you are a type B or type O blood donor

1. You will need to lie down with your head turned to one side.
2. Keep your head turned to one side and lie on your back.
3. Using an arm holder, support your body so that you are lying on your side.
4. Hold your body with your arm and place your arm on your stomach.
5. Position a blood draw container and syringe on your arm.
6. Position your arm so that the blood draw needle is pointing toward your belly button.
7. Have someone at a desk ready to give you instructions if you have any questions.
8. Wear a surgical mask to protect yourself from airborne infections like the flu.
9. If you have a stethoscope, place it on the floor and stand with your arms at your sides.
10. Position yourself so that you are standing with your back against the wall.
11. Hold your arms out in front of you at your sides.
12. Position your feet so that you are standing with your toes pointing to the ceiling.
13. Keep your head straight and your eyes open.
14. Look straight ahead and breathe deeply and slowly.
15. As you inhale, pull your arm toward your body until you feel a slight resistance in your chest.
16. As you exhale, you will feel your chest relax.
17. As you exhale your arms will slowly move out and your chest will expand.
18. Keep your arms and chest relaxed, then place your arms down at your sides.
19. Repeat the process with the other arm.
20. If you have a stethoscope, place it on the floor and stand with your arms outstretched and your chest expanded.
21. If you do not have a stethoscope, you will be asked to count aloud while you relax and breathe deeply.
22. After the fourth draw, you will be asked to change your blood draw container.
23. Once the blood draw is complete, you will be asked to put on a gown, gloves, and a face mask.

What to do if you have an allergic reaction to blood?

You should not have any problems donating blood if you are having an allergic reaction to blood. If you are having an allergic reaction to blood, you may have symptoms like:

  • Sneezing
  • Runny nose
  • Sore throat
  • Swelling of your face, lips, or tongue
  • Trouble breathing
  • Itching
  • Itching skin
  • Skin rash
  • Hives

A doctor can help diagnose the cause of the allergic reaction.

If you have any of these symptoms, call 911 or go to the emergency room.

If you are having an allergic reaction to a medication

You should not donate blood if you are having a reaction to a medication you are taking. Call your doctor if you think you have an allergic reaction to a medication you are taking.

If you have any of the following symptoms, call 911 or go to the emergency room:

  • Allergic reaction
  • Rash

What if you are pregnant or think you might be pregnant?

Many people are wondering if donating blood is safe if you are pregnant. Blood donation is safe during pregnancy. This is the only exception.

You should not donate blood if you are pregnant or think you might be pregnant.

If you are not sure if you are pregnant, your healthcare provider can check for pregnancy. You will need to wait until after your pregnancy is confirmed to donate blood.

What if you are under 18?

You are always able to donate blood. You can donate blood until you turn 18. If you have a parent or legal guardian who is 18 or older, you can ask them to donate blood.

If you have a parent or legal guardian who is under 18, you can ask them to donate blood. But you should not donate blood if you have any of these symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Headache
  • Pain during urination

Your parent or legal guardian can ask you if you want to donate blood. They can ask you what you think about donating blood.

The American Red Cross will not ask you any questions.

If you give blood for someone else

If you do not have a legal guardian and you give blood for someone else, you will not need to ask your parent or legal guardian to donate blood. You can do this on your own.

If you give blood for a loved one

If you give blood for someone else, you will need to ask your parent or legal guardian to donate blood.

Key takeaway

Blood donation is safe. If you have any health conditions, talk to your healthcare provider before donating blood. They can check your health before and after donating blood.

The American Red Cross has more information about donating blood and the process.

The American Red Cross has many ways to help:

  • Donate blood in person or online.
  • Call 18002272345 to donate blood or sign up for a virtual walk-in donation.
  • Visit our website to find the nearest donation center.
  • Help us make this a safer, more accessible donation center by downloading and installing our free app.

If you need help, you can also call 18006662608.

If you would like to donate, call 18002262437 to request an appointment, or you can visit our website.

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