Skip to content

blood plasma

blood plasma

September 1, 2023

With recent advancements in science, 3D printing and replication technology, you might be wondering why plasma can’t be simply whipped up in a lab. 

There is no duplicate for source plasma – making donation essential. It’s a completely unique, organic substance that scientists haven’t been able to recreate. In this blog, we’re breaking down why plasma can’t be manufactured in a lab, and how donating benefits you. Let’s dive in!

Why Can’t Plasma Be Manufactured in a Lab? 

To understand why plasma can’t be manufactured in a lab, we need to break down its unique properties that make it difficult to study – and so far, impossible to replicate (bear with us – it’s about to get scientific).

Blood, which plasma is a component of, is difficult to study. After blood is donated, it only stays fresh for a limited amount of time, and medical professionals haven’t been able to replicate it in the window of time that it is viable. Plus, blood is dependent on the individual: a person’s health impacts the quality and properties of their blood, making plasma tricky to recreate in one pure form.

3 Reasons Why you should Donate Plasma 

That’s why it’s so essential to donate plasma consistently, for the patients with chronic conditions, traumatic injuries and autoimmune disorders who rely on plasma transfusions as a critical component of their healthcare routine. Plus, it’s a great way to make some extra cash.

If you’re still on the fence, consider the following: 

  1. Plasma is in high demand, without enough supply. 

Plasma is essential for treating patients with immune deficiencies, bleeding disorders, physical trauma and rare disorders –  yet plasma donor numbers dropped by 31,000 over the COVID-19 pandemic. Patients who require plasma treatments like transfusions and plasma therapies rely on donors like you – but this is a two-way street. At Canadian Plasma Resources, we value your time and are proud of our donor compensation system. 

  1. Get paid to give back to Canadians in need 

This brings us to our next point – we value your time and energy, and because of that we’ve established a compensation system that rewards consistent donation. To learn more about our compensation system, check out the compensation page on our website.

  1. Take Advantage of some Me Time

When you donate plasma, you get to kick back in a comfy seat and catch up on your favourite shows or the book that you’re pouring through – and get paid for it, while giving back to others. So essentially, when you become a plasma donor, you become a triple threat.

Book your plasma donation appointment today and earn up to $750 in your first six weeks as a plasma donor!

blood plasma

August 1, 2023

Plasma proteins are like superheroes that work best together. 

There are three key types of plasma proteins: Albumins, Immunoglobulins and Fibrinogens. In this blog, we’re breaking down how each plasma protein functions as a component of plasma to fight crime (infection) and help the body maintain its immune system and heal.

What are Albumins? 

Albumins are like the multivitamin of the group – they’re general, well-rounded proteins that are supportive of your body’s overall functioning. They help balance the right amount of water and nutrients in our blood, making sure everything stays in harmony. Additionally, they transport important substances like vitamins and hormones to key parts of the body. 

What are Immunoglobulins?

Immunoglobulins guard the gates to our immune system! They’re antibodies that protect us from harmful invaders, like bacteria and viruses. When bacteria and viruses enter our system, immunoglobulins fight to protect our wellbeing. They make up 35% of plasma proteins. Immunoglobulins are a subset of globulins, which are just a group of proteins in the blood. Some globulins also work as enzymes, meaning that they help with digestion and metabolism. 

What is Fibrinogen?

Fibrinogen makes up 7% of plasma proteins. One of the essential bodily functions that Fibrinogen supports is blood clotting and coagulation. Fibrinogen converts to insoluble fibre, which helps that blood to clot. When you get injured and blood vessels are damaged, fibrinogen converts into fibrin, a fibrous protein that forms a mesh-like structure. This mesh traps blood cells and platelets, creating a blood clot that helps to stop bleeding. Blood coagulation is crucial for wound healing and preventing excessive blood loss.

Stronger Together: Plasma Protein Superheroes

Overall, plasma proteins help to maintain a variety of bodily functions. The protection that plasma proteins provide our immune system is what makes them essential for patients who require plasma protein therapies as life-sustaining treatments. 

Immunoglobulins support our wellbeing by fighting against viruses and bacteria. Albumins help to regulate blood volume and pressure, by making sure that there’s a proper level of fluids between blood vessels and tissues. This component makes plasma proteins essential for the treatment of trauma victims, because it helps to restore their blood volume and improve recovery. Finally, Fibrinogen is the part of plasma proteins that helps patients with clotting disorders or patients who are having major surgeries. Fibrinogen helps to reduce the risk of dangerous haemorrhages. 
Plasma proteins are amazing, life-sustaining elements of our immune system that keep our bodies healthy. To help patients access the plasma protein therapies and treatments that they need, donate plasma at a Canadian Plasma Resources centre today.

blood plasma

July 1, 2023

Plasma is the fluid portion of blood, that contains red and white blood cells as well as platelets, forming the entirety of whole blood. 

Plasma has many different roles within your body. Here are some of the main roles plasma is responsible for: 

Rearranging water where your body needs it.

Plasma is composed of approximately 92 percent water, serving the crucial function of filling blood vessels. This enables the continuous circulation of blood and the transportation of essential nutrients within the heart.

Plasma facilitates the transportation of hormones, nutrients, and proteins to various body parts while aiding in the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide.

Plasma’s primary function is to transport essential nutrients, hormones, and proteins to the specific areas of the body requiring them and facilitating the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide. Additionally, cells deposit their waste substances into the plasma, which aids in eliminating this waste from the body.

Acting as a fluid medium, it delivers essential substances to where they are needed and helps maintain optimal organ and tissue functioning. 

In addition, plasma supports gas exchange by carrying oxygen to tissues for energy production and eliminating carbon dioxide, a waste product of metabolism. This balanced gas exchange ensures a healthy internal environment. Overall, plasma’s multifaceted nature as a transporter, gas exchanger, and waste remover highlights its crucial role in maintaining bodily functions and promoting well-being.

Plasma plays a crucial role in maintaining blood pressure and ensuring proper circulation.

The presence of albumin, a protein found in plasma, plays a crucial role in upholding the oncotic pressure, which prevents the leakage of fluid into areas of the body and skin where fluid accumulation is typically minimal. This mechanism safeguards against unwanted fluid retention and helps maintain a balanced distribution of fluids throughout the body. Additionally, by preserving the appropriate oncotic pressure, albumin contributes to the smooth flow of blood through the intricate network of blood vessels, ensuring efficient circulation.

Plasma aids in the clotting of blood.

Finally, plasma aids in the clotting of blood. Just as we mention on our website, on ‘How Plasma is used to Treat Bleeding Disorders’ plasma contains crucial proteins that contribute to preventing excessive bleeding by assisting in the clotting process, also known as coagulation. This becomes possible through the presence of specific proteins that work together to promote clot formation. 

Individuals with hemophilia A or B, characterized by impaired blood clotting, face life-threatening risks from seemingly minor cuts and scrapes. In such cases, coagulation therapy derived from donated plasma becomes essential for their survival. This therapy provides the missing clotting factors necessary for effective clot formation and can prevent severe bleeding episodes. Through the generous donation of plasma, individuals with hemophilia can receive the critical treatment needed to manage their condition and mitigate potential life-threatening situations.

Thank you for donating.

Thank you so much for taking the time to learn more about Blood Plasma, and its functions and for becoming a more informed part of the Give Plasma community. We appreciate all you do as donors and supporters. Visit our website today to find the centre nearest you to book your plasma donation.

blood plasma

July 1, 2023

We know that when it comes to donating plasma, there can be a lot of factors that can affect your eligibility. Today, we hope to inform you more about the background of tattoos, their risks, and why there is a waiting period after getting your new tattoo.

What are tattoos really?

A tattoo is an imprint or artistic pattern created on the skin by inserting pigments through pricks into the uppermost layer of the skin. Traditionally, a tattoo artist uses a handheld device resembling a sewing machine, which features one or more needles that repeatedly pierce the skin. During each puncture, little ink droplets are deposited into the skin, resulting in the desired design or mark that lasts permanently.

What makes tattoos permanent? 

When a tattoo needle punctures the skin, it creates a break in the epidermis, the outer layer of skin, and deposits ink into the dermis, the inner layer that contains numerous blood vessels and nerves. This process triggers the immune system, which responds by sending immune cells, including macrophages, to the tattoo site. Macrophages play a role in cleaning up the area by engulfing the ink particles to keep the site as clean as possible. However, some ink particles evade macrophage capture and are absorbed by fibroblasts, specialized skin cells responsible for maintaining the skin’s structure. These fibroblasts and macrophages then become permanently trapped in the dermis, leading to the long-lasting presence of the tattoo.

Risks involved

There are many risks associated with getting a tattoo done. And when donating plasma, because it goes to people who are already immunocompromised, there need to be strict rules on who can and can’t donate. Because tattoos breach the skin, they can cause skin infections and other complications that in turn can hinder your eligibility to donate plasma. 

Mayo Clinic states that allergic reactions, bloodborne diseases, and other skin problems can arise after a tattoo. Since tattoos are done with dyes, this can trigger an allergic reaction such as rashes, which can even show years later. Bloodborne diseases like methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), hepatitis B and hepatitis C can also occur if the equipment used to create your tattoo was contaminated with infected blood. Lastly, areas of inflammation called granulomas can form around your tattoo which can lead to keloids – areas of skin with raised overgrowth scar tissue. 

Waiting period

Because of these potential risks involved with getting a tattoo, there is a waiting period that donors have to go through in order to be able to donate again. At the Canadian Plasma Resources Centres, we ask that our donors wait 6 months after getting their tattoos before they are eligible to donate with us. After the 6 month period is over, we are more than excited to have you back in our centres to continue/or start your donation journey.

Thank you for donating.

Thank you so much for taking the time to learn more about donating with tattoos, and becoming a more informed part of the Give Plasma community. We appreciate all you do as donors and supporters. Visit our website today to find the centre nearest you to book your plasma donation.

blood plasma

January 4, 2023

What Does the Plasma Donation Process Involve?

Donating plasma is the only way to provide immunocompromised patients with the life-sustaining plasma protein therapies they need to live well-rounded lives. 

Before we dive into how plasma provides you with ample me-time to relax and recharge, it’s important to discuss the intricacies of the plasma donation process. 

Plasma donation is different from blood donation, even though it involves a similar process of blood extraction. Plasma is The key difference is that your blood is actually returned to you through a process known as plasmapheresis. 

What is Plasmapheresis?

A plasmapheresis machine safely collects plasma, the straw-coloured portion of your blood containing vital proteins and vitamins. The device carefully returns your blood back into your body, saving the plasma to be turned into plasma protein therapies. 

Plasma is converted into plasma protein therapies between 7-12 months after it’s extracted. During this time, the plasma is frozen to ensure that it remains fresh and usable. Through a process known as plasma fractionation, it’s converted into therapies that patients who lack proteins in their own plasma rely on to live healthy lives.

What is Plasma Used For? 

Plasma is used to treat patients with a variety of illnesses, conditions and ailments. From trauma victims to patients with immune deficiencies, autoimmune disorders, bleeding disorders and more, plasma is liquid gold that is often turned into life-sustaining pharmaceutical products, but can also be used for its clotting properties in emergency medical situations.

How Does Plasma Donation Give You Me-Time? 

Now that we’ve discussed how plasma is used to treat people in need and why, it’s time to highlight not only why you should donate, but why donating plasma is actually good for you!

Plasmapheresis takes approximately 50 minutes, giving you almost an hour to completely relax and unwind. As we mentioned earlier, plasmapheresis involves extracting plasma using a plasmapheresis machine, meaning that you’re connected to the machine for the entirety of the process. 

The process provides you with a rare opportunity to truly relax and unwind – there is nothing for you to do at this time but see the donation process through, meaning that you have 50 minutes of uninterrupted me-time.

We suggest bringing a book, listening to your favourite music, an audiobook, a podcast or watching a comfort TV show! The time can be as relaxing and restorative as you make it. 

Plus, not only do you get some well-earned me-time during the plasma donation process, the act of donating plasma is good for your health.

Studies show that acts of kindness – like doing good for others – can boost your happiness, make you feel connected to a social community and even help you to feel more positively about the world around you.

Why Should You Donate Over the Colder Months?

In winter, we know that it can be tempting to stay indoors and not leave your house when the weather turns cold! 

But patients who require plasma protein therapies to live healthy, well-rounded lives rely on donors year round. It takes 1,000 donors to supply enough plasma for one patient with haemophilia. This holiday season, consider the benefits that giving back offer you and the critical need of those who rely on your donations. Book an appointment at a centre near you today!

blood plasma

January 4, 2023

Plasma, the yellowish-golden component of blood containing vital proteins and vitamins, is used to treat patients who live with autoimmune conditions as well as victims of trauma in emergency situations. 

What Defines a Trauma Victim? 

Trauma victims are patients requiring urgent care for critical injuries and severe wounds. The most common categories of trauma resulting in fatalities range from car accidents to falls. Many survivors of trauma survive – the mortality rate is 20%, and this largely hinges on their post-trauma care. 

Why is Plasma Used to Treat Trauma Victims? 

Plasma is used to treat trauma victims because of its clotting properties. Plasma is separated from red blood cells and platelets (the other components of blood) during the plasmapheresis process. Plasma’s different components also have different shelf lives – when frozen, plasma is usable for up to a year, whereas red blood cells and platelets cannot be safely frozen. 

Plasma contains antibodies, clotting factors, and various proteins. Because of this, plasma can be used to treat trauma, shock and burn victims. 

One study found that, within a 30 day window, 76.8% of patients who received plasma survived, compared to 67% of patients who did not receive plasma and only received standard care. 

How Plasma is Used to Treat Trauma Victims

Plasma transfusions are used to treat a variety of trauma victims – even those in the NICU. 15% of NICU patients are treated with plasma, mostly to treat or prevent bleeding. 

For patients requiring blood transfusions after a massive injury, when they’ve suffered from extensive blood loss, aggressive plasma transfusions have been proven to help people survive!

Plasma transfusions boost blood clotting and volume, helping trauma and burn victims to prevent and treat shock. 

Why Donate Plasma?

In order to live healthy lives, people with immune deficiencies, autoimmune disorders, bleeding disorders, and more rely on plasma protein therapies. Plasma donors ensure that patients are able to receive the life-sustaining treatments that they need. Every donation helps! Book a plasma donation appointment at a Canadian Plasma Resources centre near you to help us help others.

blood plasma

December 31, 2022

Did you know that there are different types of plasma proteins? There’s globulin – which helps to support your immune system and blood clotting – and albumin, which provides amino acids to your body tissue. These two types of proteins – and their collection processes- are different. 

Source plasma is collected from donors to be turned into plasma protein therapies for immunocompromised patients and trauma victims. There is no replacement for source plasma – it can’t be manufactured in a lab and the only way for those in need to receive the plasma-protein therapies they require is for donors to donate plasma consistently. To learn more about how plasma is used to help others, keep reading! 

1. Plasma is used to treat immunocompromised patients. 

Plasma is extracted through a process known as plasmapheresis, in which the donor is connected to a plasmapheresis machine intravenously. The plasmapheresis machine withdraws all blood components, separating plasma from other blood cells and returning those cells to the body. The entire process takes 45-50 minutes to complete. You can read more about it here! Plasmapheresis separates the protein-rich plasma from the rest of the blood so it can be manufactured into live-saving therapies. 

2. It’s used to treat rare and chronic diseases. 

Plasma is used to treat over 80 different rare and chronic diseases. Patients who rely on plasma treatments often require those treatments for life, meaning that consistent donation is key to helping patients in need receive the treatments they require. It can take up to 1,200 donations to treat one patient for a year! That’s why it’s crucial to donate plasma consistently.

3. Plasma is used to treat trauma victims. 

Plasma is used to heal tissue with platalet-rich plasma therapy, otherwise known as PRP therapy. This is the most common treatment method for healing tissue with plasma due to injuries from everyday accidents.

Platelet—rich therapy involves injecting concentration of the patient’s platelets into the injured areas. These platelets aid in the body’s natural healing process. Growth factors stimulate the reparative cells produced by your body, helping it to heal.

Whether you’re looking to give back to others or make some extra cash (or both!) this holiday season, donating plasma is an effective way to do good for others while helping yourself. 

We’d like to extend a special shout out to our consistent donors in our plasma donation community. Your continued generosity is what makes the work that we do possible – helping patients in need to receive the treatments and care that they deserve! We look forward to seeing you come through our centre doors soon.

blood plasma

November 29, 2022

When you give back to others, you give back to yourself. Giving back to others has been proven to benefit your own mental health and well-being, and donating plasma is a perfect way to give back. 

The donating portion of the plasma donation process takes approximately 50 minutes, making it the perfect opportunity to get some me-time. With the busy holiday season, consider taking the time to give plasma to someone in need – while also taking care of yourself! 

Read on for more information on how giving plasma can be good for you! 

Why Give Back? 

Giving back comes with numerous health benefits. Some of the physical health benefits include: 

  • Lowering your blood pressure
  • Increasing your self esteem 
  • Helping to mitigate symptoms of depression
  • Decreasing problems with cognition
  • Lowering your stress levels 
  • Increasing your sense of happiness and well-being 

If you’re wondering why – and how – plasma donation, in particular, can boost your sense of happiness and well-being, we’re here to tell you! Participating in an altruistic act like donating plasma activates the pleasure regions in your brain, creating a “warm glow” feeling that is fueled by the release of serotonin, oxytocin, and dopamine. 

Donating Plasma and Giving Back 

An unexpected perk of donating plasma is that it can serve as an early preventative check for diseases! Because of the rigorous screening process that our donors go through, when you give back you actually take care of yourself by getting your vitals checked and assessed by our team of trained professionals. This can serve as early disease detection! 

Give Back this Holiday Season

If you’re looking for ways to give back this holiday season, book a plasma donation appointment today! You can safely donate plasma twice in a seven day period and earn up to $95/week for doing so. With the extra expenses of the holidays, donating plasma can be a great way to earn some extra cash during the season of giving. 

blood plasma

August 23, 2022

Whether you’re a new or returning plasma donor, or someone who is curious about giving plasma, you probably have some questions about the donation process. In this blog, we’re breaking down the do’s and don’ts of plasma donation so that you feel comfortable, prepared, and confident about donating. 

Things You Should Do Before Donating Plasma

1. Drink Plenty of Water

Aim to drink 6-8 cups of water prior to your appointment. Making sure that you’re adequately hydrated will help to ensure that your donation is accepted – when you’re hydrated, your veins are full and plasma is able to be easily separated. 

2. Eat a Nourishing Meal

One of the reasons that your donation could be deferred is due to low iron and protein levels. It’s in your best interest to eat an iron and protein-rich meal within four hours of your donation. An example of a meal that would meet your iron and protein needs would be a piece of cooked chicken or fish with a side of broccoli or leafy greens. 

3. Get a Good Night’s Sleep

To maximize your donation and ensure a smooth recovery, make sure that you are well rested prior to your appointment. Ideally, you should get eight hours of quality sleep. 

Things to Avoid Before Donating Plasma

Before donating plasma, there are a few foods, drinks, and activities that you should try to steer clear of. We’ve listed the key things to avoid below! 

1. Avoid Drinking Caffeine and Alcohol

It’s crucial that you don’t drink caffeine on the day of your appointment – from coffee, tea, matcha, an energy drink, or any other source. Caffeine can constrict your blood vessels, which can make it difficult to access a vein and return the non-plasma components of blood back into your body during the donation process.

Another beverage you should avoid is alcohol. Alcohol is a diuretic, and it can dehydrate you. It’s recommended that you avoid alcohol for 24 hours before you donate plasma, to help your body stay hydrated and healthy.  

2. Avoid Smoking

You shouldn’t smoke tobacco or cannabis at least eight hours prior to your appointment. Smoking tobacco increases your blood pressure, and if you smoke cannabis you will be deferred for at least a day. 

3. Avoid Fatty Foods

Eating fatty foods prior to your appointment can make your plasma cloudy and impact your blood test during the screening process, which could lead to you being deferred from donation. Avoid eating fatty foods, like pizza, chips, or french fries, on the day of your appointment. 

Why Donate Plasma? 

There is no replacement for source plasma – it can’t be manufactured in a lab, and it’s used to treat over 80 immune conditions and autoimmune diseases. Patients who require plasma-protein therapies rely on donors like you to show up consistently and donate quality plasma! 

At Canadian Plasma Resources, you can earn up to $400/month by consistently donating plasma twice per week. Book a plasma donation appointment at a centre near you to help others while also supplementing your income. 

blood plasma

May 31, 2022

Plasma, a yellowish liquid component of blood, has long been used as the starting material for therapies known as plasma products. Plasma products replace missing or deficient proteins in patients who have rare diseases. However, on occasion, donated blood plasma cannot be used to create these life-saving therapies, and the plasma must be discarded. 

If you’d like to learn more about the reasons why this may happen and what you can do to prevent it, keep reading to find out. 

Who Needs Blood Plasma?

Plasma is used to treat over 80 different rare and chronic conditions. Some of these conditions include alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency, primary immunodeficiencies, and hemophilia. Plasma can also be used to treat shocks, burns, and trauma. 

Why Do Plasma Donations Get Rejected?

Thanks to the strict standards set out in Health Canada’s Food and Drug Act and Blood Regulations, Canada has one of the safest blood and plasma systems in the world. All establishments collecting blood and plasma in Canada must adhere to strict regulations and meet safety requirements. This means that if collected plasma does not meet safety standards, it must be discarded. 

What Causes Plasma Donations to Get Rejected?

Some common reasons why plasma donations may get rejected include:

  • The donation being lipemic. 
  • A low volume of collected plasma. 

Thankfully, there are things you can do as a plasma donor to prevent these scenarios from happening!

How to Prevent Your Donations from Getting Rejected

To prevent your plasma from being rejected for being lipemic, it’s best to avoid eating fatty foods prior to your plasma donation and opt for healthy protein and iron-rich foods instead. Lipemia occurs when there is a high concentration of fats in the blood. It causes blood plasma to turn milky white and cloudy, and it is not safe to use in plasma-derived medicines. 

A low volume of collected plasma can be caused by dehydration, having too much caffeine, and/or smoking before a plasma donation appointment. As such, it’s best to:

  • Drink 6-8 cups of water on the day of your donation. 
  • Not consume caffeinated beverages at least 6 hours prior to donating. 
  • Refrain from smoking for at least 8 hours prior to your appointment. 

There you have it – several actions you can take to help ensure the plasma you donate is used to create life-saving therapies. Up to 1,200 plasma donations are needed to treat just one patient with a rare disease for a year, so every donation counts. Book your next plasma donation appointment today to help change someone else’s life for the better and earn up to $400/month for doing so!