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Location: Northern California

Read all about the adventures of the Tsao Family during the summer of 2012

Tuesday, February 28, 2006


Liveblogging for Team Apheresis

[Update: I survived the apheresis procedure. Who knew that free Interweb access and an opportunity to blog would be another perk? Cool. The drawbacks were that my arm started getting a little sore after having a needle in it for over an hour. Also, typing with one hand became annoying. But these are minor issues. I am glad that I joined TEAM APHERESIS and yes, I do feel like a better person for having done it. Unlike whole blood donation, apheresis can be performed every two weeks although I'll probably shoot for doing it once a month because of the time commitment. If you qualify to be a blood donor, consider it, please.]

What if somebody offered you an opportunity to hang out in a recliner for two hours, relax, and watch a movie? Would you do it?

But there's a catch. While you're kicking back watching Jennifer Garner in Thirteen Going on Thirty, you also are having your blood drawn from your arm in a process known as apheresis.

The process of apheresis involves removal of whole blood from a patient or donor. Within an instrument that is essentially designed as a centrifuge, the components of whole blood are separated. One of the separated portions is then withdrawn and the remaining components are retransfused into the patient or donor.

I have a long and self-centered history of donating blood. It started in college when the lure of free food brought me and my dorm mate to the college blood drive. She fainted halfway through the donation process, but I filled that bag no problem and was rewarded with all the orange juice and cookies I could manage. Free food is the best way to attract starving students.

Free food is always good, but I now am attracted to the lure of childfree moments and that is what the kind folks at my local blood center told me about when they called to ask me to join TEAM APHERESIS. Really, how could I resist?

And that's how I ended up here, liveblogging for Team Apheresis.

Here's a link to more information about apheresis. If you've got the time, don't mind needles, and want to do more to help cancer patients, check out the procedure at your local blood bank. I did it for the free candy bar, two hours sans kids, and bad movies starring Mrs. Ben Affleck, but you can do it because you're an awesome person.

I wish I had brought my camera.

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