(2) Pulse. The pulse should be counted for at least 15 seconds. It should
exhibit no pathologic irregularity and should be between 50 and 100 beats per minute.
However, if a prospective donor is an athlete with high exercise tolerance, a lower pulse
rate may be acceptable. The blood bank physician should evaluate marked
abnormalities of pulse and recommend acceptance, deferral, or referral for additional
(3) Blood pressure. The systolic blood pressure should be no higher than
180 mm Hg and the diastolic blood pressure should be no higher than 100 mm Hg.
(4) Skin lesions. The skin at the site of venipuncture must be free of
lesions. Both arms must be examined for signs of intravenous drug abuse. The
common findings would be needle puncture marks and/or sclerotic veins. Mild skin
disorders such as acne, psoriasis, or rash of poison ivy are not necessarily cause for
deferment unless present in the antecubital area or are unusually extensive. Donors
with boils, purulent wounds, or severe skin infections anywhere on the body should be
deferred, as should anyone with purplish-red or hemorrhagic nodules or indurated
plaques suggestive of Kaposi's sarcoma.
(5) General appearance. If donor looks ill, appears to be under the
influence of drugs or alcohol, or is excessively nervous, it is best to defer temporarily.
(6) Temperature. The oral temperature must not exceed 37.5 C (99.6 F).
Use caution. When taking the patient's temperature with a glass thermometer, a
thermometer cover is advised.
A glass thermometer should never be in the donor's mouth when blood
is obtained for a hematocrit or hemoglobin determination. The donor
may bite down hard on the therometer, break, and cut himself or
swallow the glass and mercury.
(7) Hematocrit or hemoglobin. These values vary. Depending on the
source, refer to the chart for minimum values in Table 1-1.
(a) Copper sulfate method. Test procedures to be used are adapted to
the source of the specimen (see Table 1-1). The solutions should be stored at room
temperature in tightly capped containers to prevent evaporation. For routine use,
dispense 30 ml of solution into an appropriately labeled, clean, dry tube or bottle.
Change solution daily and after every 25 tests. This method is based on specific
gravity. A drop of blood dropped into the solution is encased in a sac of copper
proteinate, which prevents any change in specific gravity for about 15 seconds. If the
drop of blood has a satisfactory specific gravity it will sink within 15 seconds. If not, the
drop will hesitate, remain suspended, or rise to the top of solution in 15 seconds. This
is not a quantitative test and will show only that the hemoglobin is equal to, below, or