Volume of blood taken

Modem blood collection packs are designed to hold 450 ± 45 mL of blood, mixed with 63 mL of citrate-phosphate-dextrose-adenine (CPD-A) anticoagulant. The ratio of anticoagulant to blood must be maintained at the optimal level, and donations of less than 405 mL or more than 495 mL of blood should not be issued for clinical use. Healthy donors can generally withstand the loss of 450 mL of blood without any ill effect, but vasovagal reactions become more common in those who weigh less than 47.5-50.0 kg (105-110 lb), as the standard donation represents a greater proportion of their total blood volume. In some countries, such as China and Japan, 'underweight', otherwise healthy, donors may donate smaller volumes (250 mL) of blood into specially designed packs containing the appropriate volume of anticoagulant. In several countries, including the UK, double doses of red cells are collected by apheresis from suitable large donors; such units are very useful to decrease donor exposure in multitransfused patients such as those with P-thalassaemia major.

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