Who Needs my Plasma?

24 June, 2020

Donating plasma is one of the best ways to help make a real and lasting difference in the world.  

This is because the plasma you donate is used to manufacture medicines that help treat several kinds of illnesses. In fact, many of these illnesses or conditions are rare and life-threatening. These conditions are mostly genetic and often chronic and are suffered by a small percentage of our population.  

These are the patients who most urgently need your plasma. They rely on the kindness of donors like you who donate, not just once or twice, but regularly to help them lead better and more joyous lives.  

The conditions these patients suffer from cause them to either entirely lack certain essential proteins or be deficient in them. After you donate your plasma, it is thoroughly tested for viruses and other harmful substances. If all tests return negative, it is advanced for fractionation, the process of isolating or extracting these very proteins, and making therapies based on them. The proteins replace the missing proteins or boost them.  

For example, Alpha-1 Proteinase Inhibitor therapies are used to treat Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency, which, as the name suggests is a deficiency of the Alpha-1 Antitrypsin protein. Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency is a very common hereditary condition that can cause fatal liver disease in both children and adults, along with causing lung disease in adults.  

Proteins known as clotting or coagulation factors are also essential, and their lack or deficiency is a cause of multiple bleeding disorders. For example, Hemophilia A is a heredity bleeding disorder that is caused by a lack of Factor VIII. Whereas, Hemophilia B is a blood clotting disorder caused by a mutation of the Factor IX gene.  

Finally, your plasma is also rich in proteins called immunoglobulins. Therapies based on them are used to help treat immune system disorders, such as Primary Immunodeficiency Disease (PI), a genetic condition that prevents one’s immune system from functioning properly, making the patient more prone to infections.  

Here’s a list of common conditions that are treated by therapies based on your donated plasma.  

  1. Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency (Alpha-1 Proteinase Inhibitor therapies) 

  1. Hereditary Angioedema (C1 Esterase Inhibitor therapies) 

  1. Hemophilia A (Coagulation Factor therapies) 

  1. Hemophilia B (Coagulation Factor therapies) 

  1. Von Willebrand Disease (Coagulation Factor therapies) 

  1. Antithrombin III Deficiency (Coagulation Factor therapies) 

  1. Primary Immunodeficiency Disease (Immunoglobulins) 

  1. Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy (Immunoglobulins) 

  1. Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (Immunoglobulins) 

  1. Kawasaki Disease (Immunoglobulins) 

Besides helping treat rare conditions, your plasma is also instrumental to everyday preventive, and emergency medicines. The protein Albumin is used extensively to treat burns, shocks, trauma, and certain liver conditions. It is also of great help during major surgeries.  

The list doesn’t end there, but the point is that these predicaments affect men as much as they affect women – adults as much as children – organs as much as entire bodily systems. And so we need more and more people to donate plasma regularly. 

Give someone the chance to live a happier and healthier life. Donate your plasma. Find more information here.  

 

 

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