Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Donating blood save lives - Nothing to lose but everything to give

There was a blood donation drive in UKMMC (University Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical Centre) this morning. So, guess what? YUP! Today's post is about encouraging you (and your friends and family) to donate blood.

If you are already a blood donor, i would like to congratulate you!! If you are not, do join me.. try donating blood~

Donating blood gives you one of the best feeling in the world. Knowing that with donating blood, you are saving lives, making a difference. One of the most common comments i get are : 'Donating blood is painful' or ' I am afraid or needles' or ' It is too troublesome'..

Let me share with you my first blood taking experience few years back.. and take you on a journey of blood donation...

When i turned 18, the one thing i wanted to do (besides driving), was donating blood. You know, the way you want to enter the casino the moment you turn 21. It was like a must-do thing. Only that, i had a problem. Well, i was indeed afraid of needles, and i have a very, VERY low threshold for pain.

I have to admit, even now, i am still partly afraid of needle pricking. I know, it's irony, since i am already in Medical school and i am pricking patients everyday. Then i discovered ways to overcome the fear : Donating Blood does not have to be a nightmare

The first time i donated blood, obviously i looked away and prayed it'll all past ASAP. Surprisingly, it was not as pain as i expected. The thing is, unlike the usual blood taking at clinics, before blood donation, you would be injected lignocaine (a local analgesia) which would numb your arm. The injection is like the bit of a ant, not even a strong ant, rather like a weaken ant. And therefore, when they insert the needle, you feel nothing at all, NOTHING at all, seriously..

This time, i actually video-ed the whole process of the lignocaine and needle insertion, however, my Se 750i camera phone had failed me and the video cannot be played or uploaded.. sigh... Anyway, if shinyin is brave enough to record her ownself being pricked by a needle, blood donation to you is 'sap sap sui' lar...

So the process start with registration, and to see whether you are suitable for blood donation:

Generally, you are eligible to donate blood if
  • You are in good health today
  • You are between 18 to 60 years of age
  • Your weight is above 45 kg
  • You had more than 5 hours of sleep
  • You are free from any medical problems: e.g. high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, operation less than 6 months ago
  • You have not taken any antibiotics in the last one week or immunization in the past 3 weeks
  • You are not pregnant or just delivered
  • You have taken breakfast or light lunch before donating blood
  • You are not menstruating
  • You are not involved in any of the following activities:
    • Homosexual relationship
    • Bisexual relationship
    • Multiple sexual partners
    • Having sexual contact with those mentioned above
    • Drug abuse
  • Interval between your last donation is more than 3 months

Then, your blood will be checked for blood grouping and whether your hemoglobin levels are adequate.

I am group B!

The last few times i wanted to donate blood, my Hb was not adequate.
But today, yeay! it sink instead of floats~
Adequte blood pressure... Mine was just borderline adequate today.. hehe...
Weight more than 45kg (i remembered boon lee often boost her weight before a blood donation, haha! coz she was just at the borderline)

Finally, you will be injected Lignocaine (local pain killer) - sting a little.
Then the needle for blood taking will be inserted, the needle looks scary but at this point, your arm is already numbed, so, no pain at all!! =)
You are required to do a pumping motion on the PVC tube with your hands
This process takes less than 10 minutes..

You can see your blood filling up the bag

Yeay! finally, the bag is full..

The tube is clamped. Before you realise, it's all over.

I'm proud of my bag of blood =)

i was wondering whether i should post the picture of the needle... okay lar, here it is.. i know it looked scary, but seriously, it's not painful :)

At the end, got makan and certificate somemore...
but i think, we gain something more satisfying:
knowing that we had help someone else who was in need of blood

So, will i hear you donating blood too?
join me!
Donate blood- it's the gift of life!

p/s: oh yes, we won the debate!! hurray!!! :) with Lingesh and MK being best speakers :)
Related links:
Confidence can be made up, right?
Contraception should be allowed in unmarried sexually active adolescents - a debate



Everyday someone depends on blood for life. Blood maybe needed for surgery, for an accident victim, or to help treat patients with leukemia, cancer, heart and liver diseases, and haemophilia. Your contribution could help save a life here.


Yes. lf you are 18 years of age ( proof of age may be required)and weigh at least 45 kg. In general, medications in themselves are no cause for deferral. Rather acceptance or deferral is based on the underlying medical conditions.lf you are on any medications, please let us know at the blood drive.


You should feel well if you plan to donate. Your health and safety are very important to us. You will be asked to complete a Donor consent form where professional health history will be asked. Your pulse and blood pressure and a drop of blood will be taken from you to test your haemoglobin. All information that you give is kept confidential.


The procedure itself takes between 7 10 minutes. How ever, you should plan to spend at least an hour at the blood drive.


There is a little sting when the needle is inserted, but there is no pain or stinging after that.


About 450 ml, which is a little less than a pint. Adults usually have 5 litres (10 -12 pints) in their body. Some may only be allowed to donate 300 ml for various reasons.


Most people feel great! Eat breakfast or light lunch before donating, and you should feel fine. Having eaten makes a big difference in how you feel afterwards.


You are advised to avoid heavy muscular or strenuous activities such as lifting, pushing or picking up heavy objects for 5 hours after giving blood. During plenty of fluids for the next 24 hours.


lt takes about 24 hours for your body to replace your blood volume or plasma. You should drink an extra four glasses of non-alcoholic fluids. Your body needs about 4 -B weeks to replace the red cells before you can donate again. You can donate again after 12 weeks.


Your blood is tested for blood type, syphilis, hepatitis viruses, the AlDS viruses (HIV).Then your blood is stored for use. Your blood can be used either as whole blood to help one patient or after separation into components (red cells, platelets, plasma), to help several patients.


  1. My blood type is A Rh Positive but I am just too scare to take blood test, what is there to say about donating blood.

  2. borneo falcon,
    i know, it can seemed to be scary.. but seriously, after you take that first step, you will realised it's 'sap sap sui'(wet wet water) only...
    it's not painful, seriously..
    why else would people donate blood repeatedly... i have a friend who donated blood like 11 times already! take that first step, you can do it de!! donate blood, and tell me about it! you can blog about it ^^

    stp, why faint????

  3. eh?? i dont remember i was given lignocaine last time.
    But for me its not painful la.

  4. im a not so regular donor (prolly once or twice a yr). aft so many yrs i still dare not look at the needle. it's super big man. it's not vry pain but the blue black on my arm after dat is super ugly. nevertheless.. i will still con't to donate. dunno why is it soooo difficult to convince ppl around me to donate. one shud start donating b4 they cant anymore. =P

  5. wi, what would i do without lignocaine man?

    passer-by, i know, the needle is super big.. and yeah, the blue-black mark is still on my arm, even now... but i'm sure it'll go away... i think the difficult part was convincing people that donating blood is not painful.. once you have had donated blood once, it's likely that you'll do that again, as it gives you a nice feeling after that... =) you know, taking the first step is hard.. but i also know of many people who badly wants to donate blood but are not qualify to, like people with thalassemia, G6PD deficiency, underweight, too low Hb levels, etc...

  6. i haven't donated any blood yet..will do will do when i go back home..:)

  7. i scare to donate the blood because when i see those machine i very scare....... I see those red blood i think i will faint ! plus i am very too skinny just "ngam ngam" 45 kg ...

  8. i wish i can donate as i'm still at my borderline :O congrates SY!

  9. chiili, yeay! another new blood donor! glad to hear that!! =)

    sabahking, ngam ngam 45kg means you passed!! don't be scared.. many people has done it, you can do it too! ^^ jia you!

    boon lee, eh, you signed up for a new blogger account?? start blogging also lar.. join me, shin loo, pong and xiang! =)

    cg, there's always a first time.. do drop by at the next blood donation booth, or you can always go to Pusat Darah Negara (at Titiwangsa, near HKL).. looking forward to see you blog about it =)

  10. luckily i'm here.. no need donate.. wait i eat more first ah... too skinny.

  11. anonymous, luckily you are where? you are? sometimes, it can be frustrating right? -when you want to help people but couldn't... but don't feel bad... at least you hv the will ^^

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Author's Note

Dear friends and readers, Thank you for dropping by and leaving comments/ shoutouts. More importantly, thank you for being there... please accept my apology that, lately, i may be busy with work and not have time to reply youir messages/comments, but rest assured, each and everyone is read, and highly appreciated :) have a nice day! ^^

of love

Today, i heard a story which was not a story of falling...
of living in the dark end of winter turmoil..
instead, it was a love story..
of a couple who did not live happily ever after...
but they live, loving each other..