Monday, 3 August 2009

Giving blood

I had an appointment to give blood today, it would have been my fourth ever donation. The first time I ever gave blood was in May 2008. Since then I have become a regular donor, although twice I have had to delay slightly due to falling ill both for my 2nd and 3rd donations! So anyway today I went and I was feeling tip top despite having got up at 5.30am for work. Went through the health questionnaire had to speak to the nurse as I have a new mousse thing for my psoriasis on my scalp. Yes all fine. Ok finger prick, drop of blood floats straight to the top. The guy suggests that if I had just put moisturiser on that can affect the result, so takes another pipetteful, it does the same. So he says we'll need to take a blood sample and test it in our machine. He advised that next time I shouldn't moisturise my hands prior, I told him I had washed my hands with soap then moisturised. Apparently liquid soap and moisturiser are both things that can affect results of the fingerprick test.

So I'm there cursing myself that I'll have to have 2 needles instead of one today. I felt sure it would have been the moisturiser. But no he returns after taking the blood test with a leaflet and informs me my haemoglobin was 124 (i'm not sure what the units are) and that the cut off is 125! So I am the tiniest bit low. This is fine I understand that a cut off is a cut off. I was expecting him to say wait a couple of weeks maybe even a month and then come back but it turns out I have to wait 3 months! I was rather shocked by that. I'm disappointed in myself for not eating enough iron. At least now I can make an effort to increase my intake. I think I havent had much iron lately and have probably been using my stores. The leaflet suggests aiming for 3 iron rich foods a day.

I was disappointed because I'm supposed to be a nutritionist and know what to eat etc! And I feel like a weakling! I like giving blood, it's a great feeling to think that you could have saved someones life. I feel like someone will be missing out on my blood, especially as I am O negative which is always in demand. A lesson has been learned and I'll keep more of an eye on what I'm eating now. I'll try to increase my intake overall of iron and also have extra, extra in the period just before I'm allowed back to try again!

As always the blood service staff were very friendly, helpful and just generally great. They really make you feel welcome and want to return again next time.

Not much else to report, early night for me tonight I reckon.

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