Blood plasma is the liquid part of blood - it is actually of a yellowish color, and it is the solid matter in it that gives blood the red color we all know so well. Contrary to what we might normally assume, blood is made up of several different components, and some of them are solid, not liquid. Plasma makes up only around 55 per cent of blood's total volume. Blood cells (both red and white), along with several other components make up the rest of the volume. Blood plasma has a variety of uses in medicine, and is in great demand. The two main types of plasma that are used are fresh, frozen plasma and dried plasma. Today we have plasma banks that actively seek out or invite donations of plasma. Of course, the word "donations" is not always apt, as some plasma banks and blood banks actually pay people who provide plasma. Thus for students and some other people, this becomes a way to earn a quick and easy buck, with a miniscule amount of pain and discomfort.
Of course, there are several safeguards in place in order to ensure that no abuse of this process occurs, and to ensure the safety of both the donors and the receivers of blood and plasma. However, in most cases, the safeguards mainly relate to the age and health of the donor, and the frequency of donation. Generally, plasma banks require you to be at least 18 years old and of a certain minimum weight. You should also not be suffering from any disease, including mild, short term diseases at the time of donation. Usually, you also cannot donate plasma more than twice a week. In some cases, a plasma bank may have certain additional criteria - for example, if you have recently been abroad or if you have a tattoo, you may not be accepted as a donor. Some plasma banks have a drug test, where they may screen you for any illegal or simply undesirable drugs. It is extremely unlikely that a plasma bank will specifically screen for amphetamines, but practically every drug test will certainly screen for all common drugs, and this includes amphetamines.
Therefore, if you have taken amphetamines, whether on prescription or for some other reason, you should not think about donating blood or plasma, as you will probably end up wasting both your time and the time of the people at the plasma bank.
Submitted by M H on January 27, 2010 at 04:02