You may remember my last post about The Plasma Center. Well, it’s been 8 weeks since the last time I went, and yes, I already have stories:

Monday: First visit. My donation was going great. The first stick didn’t need to be adjusted and everything worked great. I got 700 mL in and suddenly my arm started puffing up — quick. I alerted the master plasma technician and she switched the needle to the other arm. Apparently, it never happens like that. If you’re going to start bruising on a return cycle, you always do it in the first cycle, not the 2nd to the last. Funny thing is, with as much as my arm puffed up, 48 hours later there was still no bruise. Don’t know what the deal is, but I’m not complaining. I also made a blood splatter. When they heat sealed the tube to remove it, it splattered on the guy and on the chair next to me. I did complete the donation though! NOTE: to the people on facebook, I told you it wasn’t an exciting story.

Wednesday: 2nd visit. Once again, everything looked great. It was going a little slow, even for me, but I’m not afraid of a slow donation. I was a little more than halfway done and the machine started acting up. The red blood cell reserve tank filled as high as it does, but then it didn’t pump the blood back in my arm. It started freaking out, so a new guy adjusted it — several times. FYI, new guy touching the needle was my sign that I wasn’t going to finish the donation. He decided it was bruising (so far no bruise) so they switched arms. Of course it didn’t take, and I still have a full tank of red blood cells. 2 different techs tried getting the vein and they both said it looked and felt like the needle was in there, but no blood was coming out, so it wasn’t. Finally they moved to last resort: a 3rd stick. The find a different vein in your arm and try to return the cells to you through that vein. Once again, it looked like they were in the vein, but they never got a ‘flash’ of blood, so they knew they weren’t. Eventually they gave up and I got yet another red blood cell loss (having 2 of those in an 8 week period is why I was kicked out last time).

I’ve got a feeling that this isn’t going to work out so well for me.

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