Platelet donations are to be done only as per the requirement of the patient as the shelf life of the product is only 5 days. The donors have to be identified and kept ready for platelet donation at the need of hour.
Platelets are the smallest cell elements in the bloodstream that help in stopping bleeding by formation of a plug at the site of breach/injury.
There are Random donor platelets (RDP) & Single donor platelets (SDP). RDP is obtained by processing whole blood donation. One unit of RDP contains >5.5X1010 platelets with a volume of 50-70ml. An adult patient would require 6 to 8 such units at a time to correct thrombocytopenia. A SDP is obtained from a single donor by aphaeresis technology. The volume of product is 200-300ml with platelet content of >3X1011. Single unit is sufficient as an adult dose.
The specialized blood collection process, by which only platelets are separated & collected from Whole blood with the help of automated cell separator machine. The procedure is known as plateletpheresis & the product obtained is termed as Single Donor Platelet( SDP) .The tested & screened donor on patients requirement is taken up for the procedure. Sterile integral tubing set is loaded & primed on the machine (one time use).The donor parameters are fed to the machine. The donor is connected to the machine using 17 gauze sterile needles either one arm (Single needle procedure) or both the arms (Double needle procedure) with all aseptic precautions. The whole blood is processed in the machine as per the donor parameters to give a product with a platelet yield of at least 3X1011 or greater suspended in plasma of volume 200-500ml.
The donor for plateletpheresis like that of a blood donor undergoes a hemoglobin screening, a confidential medical history and physical examination in which temperature, pulse rate & hemoglobin will be checked. Blood samples will be collected for complete blood count, HIV, HBsAg, HCV, VDRL and Malaria. The results are valid only for 7 days to 1 month. If the platelet donation is after I month, donors sample is tested again for the above parameters.