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Welcome to the New VR.org!

Welcome to the fresh new ValveReplacement.org!

This new software should allow us to administer more easily and to update the look and feel more easily.

One feature we had originally when we started this adventure 14 years ago, was the personal stories and experiences section. This will be returning very soon. It is a great benefit to be able to learn from the experiences of others. Especially for those who are faced with the new uncertainty of Valve Replacement Surgery.

More soon..

Hank and Michelle Eyring
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Donating Blood or Plasma

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  • Donating Blood or Plasma

    Anyone here ever donate blood or plasma? Anyone ever had a bad experience? I'd love to hear what you think about it.

    My experience: I probably won't be doing that again.
    In the living room.

    [I]"If something is going to affect your life, it's best to know as much as you can about it."[/I] -Donald Trump

    [B][U]I am not a doctor or a medical professional! Always check with your doctor before acting on any information that doesn't come from your doctor.[/U][/B]

    [color=red]If you have/had an aneurysm, please answer my poll [URL="http://www.valvereplacement.org/forums/showthread.php?37612-Aortic-Aneurysm-and-Respiratory-Issues"]here[/URL]:[/color]

  • #2
    I donated blood several times a year for almost 30 years, except for after I visited parts of Mexico, which invalidated me for a while. It was never really a problem. Interestingly, I received a 1-gallon donor pin just a few years ago. I guess they can't count. I donated a few times after my surgery as well.

    Then a new blood company took over, and in two visits, they damaged two, nice veins so badly they've disappeared. And I was counting on them for my next operation. Fie on them!

    So I don't give blood anymore. But I believe if you have a good group taking it, it's not a problem at all. I believe everyone should be required to give once every five years if they qualify as donors. If we did that, we'd never run out.

    Best wishes,
    Bob H

    "No Eternal Reward will forgive us now for wasting the dawn..." Jim Morrison

    [B] [URL="http://www.valvereplacement.org/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=8494&d=1276042314"] Click here to View the Glossary of VR Terms and Acronyms[/URL] [/B]

    [B]I am not a Medical Professional.[/B] Aortic Valve Replacement (Medtronic Mosaic) on 4/6/04, at Robert Wood Johnson UH in New Brunswick, NJ. AVR again (St. Jude Biocor) on 08/25/09 at St. Michael's MC in Newark, NJ. Both performed by Dr. Tyrone Krause, a true Zen Master Mechanic in the world of valve replacement surgery.

    Comment


    • #3
      I gave for years until my AVR and warfarin put an end to that ... I never had a bad experience donating blood except for a few times, but come to think of it those time usually involved a few cold beers and a pool cue
      No shoes, no shirt, no problem
      AVR with Ablation -St Jude Mechanical--2006
      ~Easy Does It~

      The early bird get the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese

      Comment


      • #4
        This has come up before. I don't think there are any blood banks that will take you if you're on Warfarin. The Red Cross definitely will not. If you are not on Warfarin you might be able to do it; you will have to check with the blood bank.

        If you are on Warfarin probably the only way you could donate blood would be for research purposes (i.e., for other than human use), if you can find a research lab with a blood bank for research blood.

        Donating blood is great if you can do it. It forces your body to produce new blood cells so it is like an oil change on your car. Plus you are helping other folks out so you can feel good about that. I always experienced an increase in energy a day or two after donating. Plus, its a quick and easy way to lose a little weight.

        The only downside I experienced from donating was scar tissue build up from where they stick the needle in. That was before I went on Warfarin. My donating days are over.

        If you can do it I recommend you go for it.
        Dan
        AVR 06/05/07, On-X 21mm Aortic Valve, Dr. Ammar S. Bafi, Washington Hospital Center, Wash, DC. And Medtronic Model ADDR01 Pacemaker.
        Pre-Op: [url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-aqjVayhcPY[/url]
        Surgery: [url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7RQSHbqGsTI[/url]
        Post-Op (hospital):[url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=76FLYbYNpEA[/url]
        Post-Op (out of hospital): [url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-RK9NpGr2-s[/url]
        Recovered: [url]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l39ahBFGnuk[/url]

        Comment


        • #5
          Aaron,
          I donated often for several years prior to my surgery because I have a rare type, O-neg, the universal donor. I never had any problems but I preferred to give whole blood rather than have them separate the plasma and other stuff through Apheresis. They were always great and caused little pain during the needle stick.

          I encourage anyone who can donate to do it. I got two units of blood and one of plasma due to bleeding after my surgery and I thank whoever donated that. It saved my life.

          John
          Coarctation of aorta repaired in 1966 @ 11
          AVR (bovine-pericardial valve) and aortic reduction in 2008 @ 53 ~ Cleveland Clinic

          Comment


          • #6
            I gave blood regularly since I was 18 until I was diagnosed with aortic stenosis (with time off for having kids). After I was diagnosed the red cross said I needed a letter from my cardio, and when I asked him about it he said NO. The explanation was that my heart was working over time (and had become enlarged) to pump the blood around my body and if I had less blood the heart would have to work even harder, now that I am on warfarin it's a definite no no. During the time I gave blood I had no bad experiences and would give blood again in a flash if I was able.

            Mary
            AVR 08/08/07
            on-x valve
            double bi-pass

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            • #7
              I have no idea what happened with me, but I couldn't handle the last 100 or so milliliters. There was a finite point where I could tell I wasn't gonna handle it well anymore and it was on the draw stage. It felt like a hangover, but with dizzyness... wait, it felt exactly like a hangover. Except, I wasn't very responsive for a minute.

              I want to go back just to see if I can do it. I feel defeated now.

              That's probably a good idea to ask the cardio. I have a feeling my cardio would be fine with me entering a tri-athalon though.
              In the living room.

              [I]"If something is going to affect your life, it's best to know as much as you can about it."[/I] -Donald Trump

              [B][U]I am not a doctor or a medical professional! Always check with your doctor before acting on any information that doesn't come from your doctor.[/U][/B]

              [color=red]If you have/had an aneurysm, please answer my poll [URL="http://www.valvereplacement.org/forums/showthread.php?37612-Aortic-Aneurysm-and-Respiratory-Issues"]here[/URL]:[/color]

              Comment


              • #8
                I have volunteered at Red Cross blood drives for the past few years, since I can't donate any more (I attached my 6 gallon pin to my volunteer badge). I take great pleasure in handing out the "First Time Donor" stickers -- I suppose people think it's special to get a sticker, but they really serve as a red flag for the other workers along the way, since first time donors may have difficulty with the sudden change in their blood levels. Your reaction sounds a lot like what I felt like in January when I lost half of my blood to an ulcer.
                Jim
                Imlay City, Michigan
                AVR 11-9-01, St. Jude valve
                DOB 5-18-55

                Comment


                • #9
                  You could have gotten a tad squeamish ... No really ... It is sort of like someone who never gets seasick but goes out on a relatively smooth day and hurls .... it happens ... give it another try ... people who can give need to do it for those of us who can't ... Good luck.
                  No shoes, no shirt, no problem
                  AVR with Ablation -St Jude Mechanical--2006
                  ~Easy Does It~

                  The early bird get the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Cooker View Post
                    I gave for years until my AVR and warfarin put an end to that ... I never had a bad experience donating blood except for a few times, but come to think of it those time usually involved a few cold beers and a pool cue
                    So you drank the night before and you were probably dehydrated? Or were you just hungover? Or did you do something with the pool cue..

                    Originally posted by JimL View Post
                    I have volunteered at Red Cross blood drives for the past few years, since I can't donate any more (I attached my 6 gallon pin to my volunteer badge). I take great pleasure in handing out the "First Time Donor" stickers -- I suppose people think it's special to get a sticker, but they really serve as a red flag for the other workers along the way, since first time donors may have difficulty with the sudden change in their blood levels. Your reaction sounds a lot like what I felt like in January when I lost half of my blood to an ulcer.
                    I went to the red cross and they weren't accepting donors until noon and I couldn't wait that long. The lady there referred me to a plasma donation center where I could donate AND make some money. The people at the plasma center were, for the most part, destitute. I'll put it this way, the nurses tested my ability to read more than once throughout the screening process.

                    I think next time I'm going to wait to take my blood pressure medications until after the draw, but I do think I'm going to go back. They can't use the first plasma donation unless they get a second. I don't know why.

                    I believe my reaction was hypovolemia, and the body's defense against hypovolemia is blocked by all three medications I take.

                    Originally posted by Cooker View Post
                    You could have gotten a tad squeamish ... No really ... It is sort of like someone who never gets seasick but goes out on a relatively smooth day and hurls .... it happens ... give it another try ... people who can give need to do it for those of us who can't ... Good luck.
                    It's possible, but the way the nurse was saying “HE’S NOT OK PAUL, HE’S DEFINITELY NOT OK! I’M GONNA [untintellgible] HIM.” made it seem more serious, looking back. I'm gonna give it one more shot, and if I get burned - never again.
                    In the living room.

                    [I]"If something is going to affect your life, it's best to know as much as you can about it."[/I] -Donald Trump

                    [B][U]I am not a doctor or a medical professional! Always check with your doctor before acting on any information that doesn't come from your doctor.[/U][/B]

                    [color=red]If you have/had an aneurysm, please answer my poll [URL="http://www.valvereplacement.org/forums/showthread.php?37612-Aortic-Aneurysm-and-Respiratory-Issues"]here[/URL]:[/color]

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Here's what it looked like in case anyone's interested. I had plenty of time to snap pics with my iphone.





                      In the living room.

                      [I]"If something is going to affect your life, it's best to know as much as you can about it."[/I] -Donald Trump

                      [B][U]I am not a doctor or a medical professional! Always check with your doctor before acting on any information that doesn't come from your doctor.[/U][/B]

                      [color=red]If you have/had an aneurysm, please answer my poll [URL="http://www.valvereplacement.org/forums/showthread.php?37612-Aortic-Aneurysm-and-Respiratory-Issues"]here[/URL]:[/color]

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I started donating when I was in high school and reached the gallon club pretty quickly. I'm O+ and they always need that.

                        The last year that I donated, I felt very weak for 3-5 days afterwards, and I imagine that was related to my deteriorating valve condition. Finally, I had two occasions where they managed to hit a nerve so that ended my donations.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Because of various medical problems, I never gave blood and always felt guilty about it. Then before surgery I found out that there are weird things about my blood, so no one would have wanted it, anyway!
                          Surgery Date: June 30, 2008
                          Replaced bicuspid valve with a bovine valve
                          Replaced a portion of my ascending aorta

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by AaronJ View Post
                            So you drank the night before and you were probably dehydrated? Or were you just hungover? Or did you do something with the pool cue..



                            I went to the red cross and they weren't accepting donors until noon and I couldn't wait that long. The lady there referred me to a plasma donation center where I could donate AND make some money. The people at the plasma center were, for the most part, destitute. I'll put it this way, the nurses tested my ability to read more than once throughout the screening process.

                            I think next time I'm going to wait to take my blood pressure medications until after the draw, but I do think I'm going to go back. They can't use the first plasma donation unless they get a second. I don't know why.

                            I believe my reaction was hypovolemia, and the body's defense against hypovolemia is blocked by all three medications I take.



                            It's possible, but the way the nurse was saying ?HE?S NOT OK PAUL, HE?S DEFINITELY NOT OK! I?M GONNA [untintellgible] HIM.? made it seem more serious, looking back. I'm gonna give it one more shot, and if I get burned - never again.



                            Sounds to me like you were getting ready to blow chow .... Try again and let us know ... the donation room looks every other one I have ever seen so I don't think that was it......
                            No shoes, no shirt, no problem
                            AVR with Ablation -St Jude Mechanical--2006
                            ~Easy Does It~

                            The early bird get the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese

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