Q: I have been donating plasma the past 3 weeks to help pay my rent. Lately, after donating plasma I feel tired and worn out. I just don't feel right after donating - I also feel tired all the time from the regular donation. The drowsiness is starting to affect my work performance. Should I stop donating plasma? I started giving platelets for cash, but switched to plasma donating because you can donate plasma more frequently than platelets. I need the money because they cut my hours down at work, but if it's making me feel tired and sick post-donation, should I stop for better health?
Answer: Yes, donating plasma will make you feel tired all the time - the plasmapheresis machine is sucking your energy! At every plasma center, there's a poster with the center's collection safety procedures. What plasma donation centers don't tell you is that by taking plasma, they also take proteins and lipids out of your body - all the minerals that give your body energy to live.
This is why plasma centers check protein before donation. Frequent plasma donation makes you sleep, gives you less energy all the time, and can lead to serious complications from a lowered immune system, like pneumonia and lung embolism.
You may even faint or pass out when donating plasma if you continue to donate regularly.Your body feels tired for a reason - it's telling you to stop the madness.
Feeling tired after donation plasma is just the beginning - soon you'll have no energy, be constantly, chronically sick and catch every cold and flu germ going around in your office environment. Even trained phlebotomists recommend taking a break from plasma donation - donate for 3 months, and give your body 3 months to rest, for example.
Allergic to Anti-Coagulant Used in Plasma Collection
Saline is used to replenish plasma volume in the blood after donating plasma, and to prevent dehydration. You could be allergic to the anti-coagulant used in blood plasma collection, which is mostly made of saline. Saline allergies are common - up to 25% of the North American population is allergic to saline medications. A mild allergy might make you feel sleepy during/after donation, without making you feel severe symptoms like nausea and vomiting.