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Not allowed to donate blood


Aw man, this SUCKS!!

I was all set to go donate blood with my husband at lunch. I even didn't take a lunch break so I could have a full hour to do what I needed to do.

I'm not allowed to donate blood!!!!!! Why? Becuase I'm on meds. Apparently even though I've never had a convulsive seizure, the fact that I'm on an AED disqualifies me, since it changes my blood level, thus affecting how my body metabolizes my aeds. >.



I live in Namibia, for those of you who don't know where that is, it's in South West Africa, where Brad and Angelina had their baby a few years back.

Anyway, according to the rules here, if you've ever had a convulsion (I have grand mal seizures) you're not allowed to donate. They say it's because they're worried about how the donation process will affect you, they don't want you convulsing whilst donating.

It really sucks!!!!!

I am on epileptic drugs and before they disqualified medue to my medications I am on.....They told me you can't donate because of small cut on my finger. What a BUMMER!! Oh well I guess the lab is where I am taking my blood forever and the doesn't care if I have 1 cut 2 cuts ?????
Life can be really a BUMMER!!!!

In Australia, anyone with epilepsy has to be seizure free for two years before being able to donate blood products. They're worried about breaking needles, etc. I think that donating 'plasma' is a different deal with AEDs. So maybe ask about donating just the plasma product of your blood. A lot of people can donate plasma or platelets by apheresis, when they cannot donate just straight blood.
I've been to Malaria areas so I couldn't donate for 5 years. Then I was diagnosed with a blood aggregation defect so I have to get a letter from the Dr, plus the x-years for each other 'condition'. I was just about ready to give blood when I had my first seizure in 10 years and only my second ever. At that stage I wasn't on any AEDs because I hadn't been diagnosed then. Now it's just becoming all too hard!
They keep calling for blood, but in Australia they've had some legal problems with blood products so they try to cover everything. It sucks more if you have a rare blood type and still can't donate. But then one of my closest friends has the rarest blood type but because he is gay he cannot donate blood... (unless be abstains for 12 months). You can never donate blood in Australia if you have ever injected a non-prescribed drug, even if it was only once. Also, you cannot ever donate blood in Australia if you've lived in the UK between 1980-1996.
Peter Hotchkin

What about if you don't have convulsive seizures, but only partials? How would that affect eligibility I wonder...

I have tried to donate blood four times. Three times out of the four I had a seizure about an hour later. I no longer try to donate blood. This happened to me before I knew that I was having seizures. I didn't know what was happening to me. I finally put it together with the help of a doctor. For me, donating blood is a seizure trigger.

Don't mention epilepsy.  I've donated blood and haven't had a problem.

That is really awfull anyway more people should be as eager to donate blood and save lifes with <a rel="follow" href="">umbilical cord blood banking</a> and blood banking and other kinds of safe donation think that a drop of your blood could save a life

I gave blood for over 15 years. Then when I started taking meds cause of my blood levels I was told also I could not give. I always like giving blood. I also played sports and even now during my workouts I sometimes still donate LOL...x

I have never been able to donate blood here in South Africa and I was told it was because I take AEDs and it may trigger a seizure. They have to err on the side of caution.  And one has to respect the laws applied. One, to protect us and two, to protect the recipients of donated blood. There are many reasons. My daughter cannot donate blood because they feel she is underweight. My husband and son regularly feel faint after donating and they have no problems. 

Some people don't reveal all their details. This borders I feel on unethical behaviour. The person recieving your blood is in a very weakened state. If they don't want my donation because of my medication I understand. 

It's frustrating, isn't it? And you were so determined, and ready in your mind, too, that's the worst.
I tried to do the same in 2001 and they almost lauged at me. My brother was in Nassau County P.D. at the time, and volunteered to help after 9-11, and some of his friends in the N.Y.P.D. had been injured or killed, and we were trying to have a big blood drive.
Really was a huge letdown, I was born and raised there, and I wanted to do something worthwhile for those poor people, and all the firemen and police officers that needed it so badly.
It happened again when I tried to give blood after my house was hit by 3 devastating hurricanes within 2 month's time, and miraculously, made it through unscathed. I thought that was a sign that I needed to "Pay it forward", tried to give blood again, and was told again, "No, thank you."
I'll most likely try yet again, too.

That's odd!

I can't tell you how many times I've donated blood. No problem...until I got preggo, anyway. I haven't been able to donate ever since, because I don't weigh enough. And that bums me out!

My blood donation stations certainly knew about my meds though, I wonder if yours is different than mine? I was on depakote, no problem donating. Switched to phenobarbital, no problem again. Are you on either of those?

Hmmmm...I don't remember going over blood doantion w/ my neuro. Is that who told you that you can't donate? If it makes you feel any better, you do have company. There are other ways to contribute. You can help a lot by opening the minds of friends and family on blood contribution. Maybe they're decent candidates. If more people donate blood, it'll be a lot better. I'm sure the blood bank would be grateful if you could get more people walking in the door to help. Maybe that'll make you feel better too. Some ideas anyway, hope that it helps cheer you up a bit :)

Heather :)

Hi everyone,
I encourage everyone to check wtih the Red Cross in their state. I believe that the blanket prohibition against donating blood is not there, but it can vary state to state. The biggest concern I have heard is whether donating blood can affect a person's seizures. If a person is not bothered by donating blood and their health care provider says okay, then most times it's okay.. check locally and with your treating doctor!

another thought - if you can't donate for one reason or another, donate time at the blood draws - they are totally volunteer run!


Hi Epi_help

What would happen to me if I received blood from someone who takes an AED that I am allergic to? (SJS from Lamictin, swollen glands from Tegretol).



Hi Heather,Susan, Patty & fzmousie,

I remember when my Uncle had cancer...He needed blood and I am the same blood type, we all got excited thinking he could use my blood, until the hospital said Nope, I can Never donate blood,since I had Hepatitis years ago.

So since I can't do anything that way, I would help the only way I could...I would volunteer time in the blooddrive. Since I am a trained Phlebotomist, It doesn't bother me to be around the blood. I can hang out in there and help them with the paperwork, or whatever they need. They have their own people draw the blood.


I just called the red cross and they told me that if you are seizure free for six months you can donate blood, but maybe it is the AED I am on. Try and call them at 1800 give life.

This is weird.I know that people who are not diseases free are not allowed to donate blood and that I can understand.But the fact that you are on meds I don't think you should be forbidden to donate blood especially when donators are so hard to donation

Thanks you for the post.
Hi guys, Im a newbie. Nice to join this forum.

I researched many blood centers on who can donate blood here is the website:

2013 - DONATE BLOOD AND RECEIVE A FREE ???? - Ongoing - USA -
Free Sports Tickets, Gift Cards, Movies, Meals + More!

Keep in mind that each blood center adjusts these rules by the State they are located in, Contact the blood center by phone if you have questions prior to donating. If a blood center offers a freebie and you ATTEMPT to donate blood but don't qualify, You will still receive the Freebie :)

I'm in Canada. It's run by Blood Services Canada up here.

They don't allow you to donate if you are on AEDs. I've checked again a few times. It will apparently (according the them) change the way your body metabolizes the drug and could cause seizures or other problems.

Different places have different rules. I know in the US it varies by state, whereas in Canada there is one set of rules for the whole country.

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