Red blood cells
Autologous blood donations
The average adult has about five liters of blood living inside of their body, coursing
through their vessels, delivering essential elements, and removing harmful wastes. Without
blood, the human body would stop working.
Blood is the fluid of life, transporting oxygen from the lungs to body tissue and carbon
dioxide from body tissue to the lungs. Blood is the fluid of growth, transporting
nourishment from digestion and hormones from glands throughout the body. Blood is the
fluid of health, transporting disease fighting substances to the tissue and waste to the
Because it contains living cells, blood is alive. Red blood cells and white blood cells
are responsible for nourishing and cleansing the body. Since the cells are alive, they too
need nourishment. Vitamins and Minerals keep the blood healthy. The blood cells have a
definite life cycle, just as all living organisms do.
Approximately 55 percent of blood is plasma, a straw-colored clear liquid. The liquid
plasma carries the solid cells and the platelets which help blood clot. Without blood
platelets, you would bleed to death.
When the human body loses a little bit of blood through a minor wound, the platelets cause
the blood to clot so that the bleeding stops. Because new blood is always being made
inside of your bones, the body can replace the lost blood. When the human body loses a lot
of blood through a major wound, that blood has to be replaced through a blood transfusion
from other people.
But everybody's blood is not the same. There are four different blood types. Plus, your
blood has Rh factors which make it even more unique. Blood received through a transfusion
must match your own. Patients who are scheduled to have major surgery make
autologous blood donations (donations of their own blood) so that they have a perfect