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Health Tip: Donating Blood

Here's what to expect

(HealthDay News) - Donating blood is a safe and easy procedure that can help save lives.

Here is information on what to expect when you donate blood, courtesy of the American Red Cross:

  • You'll have a mini-physical exam, where your blood pressure, pulse and temperature will be checked. You also will be asked questions about your lifestyle and health.
  • The injection site on your arm will be sterilized, then a sterile needle will be inserted. Some minor stinging or discomfort is common when the needle enters the skin.
  • It takes about 10 minutes to collect a pint of blood.
  • You may need to lie still for a few minutes after the donation, and have a snack or a drink.
  • If you donate to the Red Cross, you'll be given a form with follow-up instructions and a phone number to call in case you realize that your blood may not be safe to give to another person.
  • A small number of donors may experience dizziness, fatigue or bruising at the injection site.
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