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Can't give blood ever again as I've had cancer

(64 Posts)
iwouldgoouttonight Sat 05-Dec-15 21:31:18

I've recently been diagnosed with a malignant melanoma, just waiting for a date to have a wider area removed to check its clear of cancerous cells. I had an appointment to give blood so phoned to say I couldn't make it and asked how soon I could donate again. They said if you've ever had a melanoma you can never donate again.

It surprised me a bit, I thought once you'd been treated for cancer and then been signed off (after the requisite amount of years) you had the same risk of having cancer as anyone else.

Does anyone know why they don't let you donate ever again?

BiscuitMillionaire Sat 05-Dec-15 21:33:23

I'm not allowed to donate because I have asthma. So I think there are all kinds of reasons why not.

RiverTam Sat 05-Dec-15 21:36:51

I can't because I've had a blood transfusion. Feels a bit odd that I can benefit from donated blood but can no longer return the favour!

I was told it was because of an HIV risk? But also that the blood service would take it but the NHS says no.

I also had a blood transfusion. It's due to HvCJD risk.

Floralnomad Sat 05-Dec-15 21:39:12

river I can't donate because of a previous transfusion but I thought it was because of the CJD risk .

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Sat 05-Dec-15 21:45:40

Is asthma an automatic no to donating?

TheSpottedZebra Sat 05-Dec-15 21:45:59

I just presumed it was in case something further down the line showed that certain cancers could be transmitted by blood.

Hope the rest of your treatment goes well.

iwouldgoouttonight Sat 05-Dec-15 21:46:52

I didn't know you couldn't donate if you had asthma. I knew you couldn't if you'd had a transfusion yourself although I didn't know why. There must be quite a small proportion of people who can actually donate then really. It just felt very final to be told never again, as though I'm always going to be at high risk of having cancer.

weebarra Sat 05-Dec-15 21:47:00

Nope, I've had breast cancer so that's it for me too.

TheSpottedZebra Sat 05-Dec-15 21:47:30

Asthma isn't a no. There's a good a-z here

Boosiehs Sat 05-Dec-15 21:47:56

Melanoma can hide in the body. DH has advanced melanoma.

Think of all te good you did in years of giving blood.

I can't either due to blood transfusion and various other things. Not for the want of trying!

RiverTam Sat 05-Dec-15 21:48:03

I'm sure you're right, it was 10 years ago so I can't remember.

Fizrim Sat 05-Dec-15 21:48:04

I used to donate with asthma, but can't now because I've received blood - because viruses can be transmitted but can't be detected or something like that.

CharleyDavidson Sat 05-Dec-15 21:49:07

They were happy to take my blood as an asthmatic as long as I didn't turn up symptomatic.

But since having my transfusion following DD1's birth, it's a no go now.

ReallyTired Sat 05-Dec-15 21:51:56

I think it makes sense not to risk blood donation if someone has had cancer. It's far too big a risk.

Doyouthinktheysaurus Sat 05-Dec-15 21:54:13

I can't give blood either and can't go on the bone marrow register. I had cervical cancer 10 years ago.

As far as the NHS is concerned, in some respects I am perfectly healthy and need no follow up, but apparently there are still some risks I guessconfused

iwouldgoouttonight Sat 05-Dec-15 21:56:54

I guess you're right ReallyTired, if I had to have a transfusion I'd want to know it was healthy blood. I suppose it's just brought it home that I have a potentially serious illness, I'd just been thinking they'll check it's not spread, I'll go for my check ups for a year and then I'm back to normal.

I presume its not possible to test blood for cancerous cells then like they do for hiv.

HammerToFall Sat 05-Dec-15 21:57:57

I couldn't donate till I was three years clear of ivf. Apparently it made my blood prone to mad cows disease!

weebarra Sat 05-Dec-15 22:01:26

i would - you will go back to normal, but it will be a new normal. I'm two years post diagnosis, I'm back at work, I have hair (no boobs though!). New people I meet don't even know I've had cancer.
This is good, but there will always be reminders! My DD was 8 weeks when I was diagnosed, she's now 2. She asked what her nipples were the other day, I told her and she said "like daddy's?". That was a bit weird.

Whoknewitcouldbeso Sat 05-Dec-15 22:05:46

There was always a reason why they didn't want my blood in the past do I have up presenting myself. Off the top if my head it was because I had travelled to a certain area on holiday. That I had had a tatoo, that I had had Botox, that I had had acupuncture. It got silly in the end so I quit going.

MovemberSucks Sat 05-Dec-15 22:09:25

I can't give blood because I have lived in the UK and now live in Ireland. They have to be extremely cautious with blood, they can't take a chance even if the probability of there being a problem is vanishingly low.

Luxyelectro Sat 05-Dec-15 22:11:00

I can't donate because I'm not heavy enough. I only found out half way through one blood donation when I passed out. They didn't ask me before hand how much I weighed

winterswan Sat 05-Dec-15 22:11:38

I can't either, due to low iron levels.

madamginger Sat 05-Dec-15 22:12:01

DH is asthmatic and he donates blood and plasma. They've never had any issues with him and he's donated 25 pints so far

seastargirl Sat 05-Dec-15 22:17:42

I've got asthma and had donated 29 times, when I then received 9 units of blood during the birth of my daughter, she had to have 5 blood transfusions too, made me feel a bit better that I'd at least given more than we took!

I've had to talk my husband into donating as hate the fact I can't.

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