What is whole Blood ?
Whole blood is a standard bag of blood mixed with a liquid chemical, which prevents clotting. Whole blood is used mainly when there is massive bleeding and is required infrequently in transfusion therapy. Whole blood can be separated into several components after spinning in a centrifuge
What are blood components ?
Many cellular and protein components of blood can be separated from each other. Each blood component can then be used to replace a specific blood deficiency. Components are prepared from fresh blood. The whole blood pack is spun in a refrigerated centrifuge.
RED CELL CONCENTRATES are the most widely used blood components. Most patients requiring transfusions are in need of the oxygen-carrying capacity of the red cells. Of these a few require whole blood, but most are best treated by using only red cells for treatment of anaemia and chronic blood diseases.
PLASMA is separated by spinning in a refrigerated centrifuge. It is used for treatment of some coagulation disorders.
PLATELET CONCENTRATES are used to control bleeding due to platelet deficiency. These may be caused by a disease e.g. Leukaemia or may follow severe haemorrhage. Platelet concentrates can be stored for up to 5 days.
CRYOPRECIPITATE is widely used for treatment of haemophilia A, the most common inherited bleeding disease.