Can one donate blood with diabetes, cholesterol, controlled blood pressure and after cured tuberculosis?

Medical Conditions and blood donation

As per the Drugs and Cosmetics Act and guidelines from national blood transfusion council the medical conditions mentioned for deferral is vague and incomplete and hence the medical officer has got the discretion to take or defer donation based on recent developments in modern medicine.  

According to Dr Sunder Periyavan, Additional Professor, Officer in charge, Transfusion Medicine Center, NIMHANS, Bangalore -

  1. Diabetes with medication: 
    A. Type I diabetes who is on Insulin (Injection) are to be deferred.  This is because these patients can have extreme levels of blood glucose with or without insulin.  Lower levels of blood glucose will have effect on blood donation because blood removal will further bring down the glucose level to bring about symptomatic hyplogycemia which is dangerous.  And type I diabetes will have higher chance skin infection at the site of needle prick.
    B. Type II diabetes who is on oral diabetic drug can donate blood.  This is because the blood glucose levels are not that extreme and even with 350/450 ml of blood with drawls will not cause symptomatic hypoglycemia.  Since their blood levels are fairly maintained the chances of skin infection is less.

  2. Diabetes without medication: 
    Since we do not know the blood glucose levels-high or low and at the camp site we do not test for glucose levels it is better to avoid bleeding the donor.

  3. High Cholesterol: 
    high cholesterol is an abnormal condition for the donor. If blood 350/450 ml of blood is drawn from the donor and transfused it gets diluted in patients’ blood and the level will not be that high.  And the patient can metabolize it brings down the level original level.  It is as if the patient has taken a fatty meal.  Hence blood donation is acceptable. And if the donor repeatedly donates blood there are chances that his blood cholesterol will become less and can even normalize. And, therefore can be beneficial to the donor.

  4. Medicational Tuberculosis (completed medication 3 months back): 
    when a patient who had tuberculosis and underwent complete course of medication and symptom free for more than 3 months he/she can donate blood. This is because there will not be any organisms circulating in the blood and hence no transfer (transmission) of tuberculosis to the patients transfused with this blood.

  5. Controlled hypertension with tablets: 
    A patient with controlled hypertension with medication can definitely donate blood. Because patients will not have post donation bleeding with normalized pressure. In fact a patient with mild pressure is a good donor because blood donation is faster because of the pressure and pain tolerance is higher and hence vasovagal (fainting) reaction is observed in less frequency in these donors.

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