Health Tip: Meeting Criteria for Blood Donation

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(HealthDay News) - Your height and weight are basic criteria for being able to donate blood. But your health history and other factors also may prevent you from giving a pint.

Here are general guidelines for who can donate blood, courtesy of the University of California San Francisco Medical Center:

  • You must be at least 17 years old and weigh at least 110 pounds.
  • You shouldn't have a blood pressure reading of higher than 180/100 at the time of donation. You can still donate if you take one or more blood pressure medications.
  • You shouldn't have a body piercing (excluding ear piercing) or a tattoo applied in the prior 12 months.
  • If you are diabetic, your symptoms must be well-controlled.
  • You shouldn't donate if you have used intravenous drugs, are taking antibiotics for an active respiratory infection, are sick with a cold or the flu, have recently traveled to certain countries that harbor blood-borne conditions, have had hepatitis, or are at a high risk for HIV/AIDS.

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