UAE: Covid-recovered patients can save up to three lives

Dubai - Authorities have been ramping up awareness drives to encourage more residents to donate their blood.



By Nandini Sircar

Published: Tue 2 Mar 2021, 10:11 PM

If you are among those who have had Covid and beat the virus, then you are in a good position to save lives by donating your blood.

Also read:

Covid-19: Vaccinated people may donate blood within 14 days of first or second dose

Blood donations vital during pandemic, UAE doctors say

Medics in the UAE highlight that the country’s blood banks need a consistent supply to meet the needs of the community, especially those who are battling severe Covid-19. Any blood donation can save at least three lives, but being able to give blood to those fighting the coronavirus could provide the patient with a much-needed boost.

Dr Anil Grover, internal medicine specialist at Prime Hospital, said: “After Covid-19 infection, antibodies are produced in a few days. Majority of people develop antibody responses by the second week after the onset of symptoms. But the strength of antibody response depends on various factors like age, nutritional status, severity of disease and immunosuppressant medications.

“Blood donated by people who have recovered from Covid-19 has antibodies to the virus that caused it. The donated blood is processed to remove blood cells leaving behind liquid (plasma) and antibodies. This can be used in convalescent plasma therapy for hospitalised Covid-19 patients. It is expected to boost their ability to fight the virus and may lessen the severity or shorten the duration of the disease.”

Research from the National Institute of Health NIH have found the development of three types of antibodies in the blood samples. “The first type was immunoglobulin G (IgG), which has the potential to confer sustained immunity. The second type is immunoglobulin A (IgA), which protects against infection on the body’s mucosal surfaces...The third type is immunoglobulin M (IgM), which is produced first when the body is fighting an infection.”

Dr Jimmy Joseph, internal medicine specialist and diabetologist at Aster Clinic, International City, said: “One recovered patient can donate three dosages, which can save two to three lives. Convalescent plasma therapy can speed up the recovery of patients by 85 to 90 per cent. The plasma of patients who have completely recovered from Covid-19 is rich in antibodies and when it is transfused into the actively ill patient, these antibodies will boost the immune system of the patient.”

Doctors said giving blood, platelets and plasma is one of the easiest ways one can make a life-changing impact. Dr Vishnu Chaitanya Swaroopa Sura, internal medicine specialist at Medeor Hospital, said: “Persons who have recovered from Covid-19 after two weeks are encouraged to donate plasma if they fall within the category of eligible donors. The convalescent plasma must only be collected from individuals who were diagnosed with Covid-19 and have recovered and meet all the donor qualifications.”

nandini@khalejtimes.com

KT file photo
KT file photo

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