Blood donors urgently wanted

Acute haemorrhaging is the first cause of “avoidable” death in war or civilian trauma. A functional failure of the blood-clotting mechanism, called “coagulopathy” sets in very quickly in 30% of severe bleeding cases and causes persisting blood loss with a mortality rate estimated at about 40%. The treatment of haemorrhagic shock involves immediate transfusion of plasma, red blood cells and platelets.

S19301However, today there is an urgent need for whole blood of blood group O, plasma and platelets for wounded and injured military personnel and patients being treated in military hospitals.

  • donors of whole blood group O. It takes 15 minutes to give blood with no prior appointment necessary.
  • donors of blood groups AB and A in particular to give plasma
  • donors of platelets of all blood groups, but particularly type A. The time needed for collecting varies between 45 to 90 minutes and an appointment is imperative.

If you are unavailable in the next few days, you can always go to either one of the two CTSA armed forces blood transfusion centres (Centre de transfusion sanguine des armées), particularly in the summer when there are fewer donors, in the knowledge that the CTSA has a daily need of 110 donors of whole blood, seven donors of plasma and four donors of platelets. 

CTSA Clamart, 1 rue du lieutenant Raoul Batany, 92140 Clamart, tel.: 01 41 46 72 24 open Monday-Friday 08:30 to 16:30.

CTSA Toulon, Boulevard Sainte-Anne, 83000 Toulon, tel.: 04 83 16 22 61 open Monday-Friday 08:30 to 16:30.


woman can give blood no more than 3 times a year.

man, 5 times a year at most.

In addition you must be :

– Aged between 18 to 70

– Weigh at least 50 kg

– Not be taking any medication (antibiotics…)

– Not have had an infection or fever of more than 38 °C in the previous two weeks.

– Not have been in recent contact with anyone suffering from a contagious disease (the lapse of time varies according to the incubation period)

– Not have malaria (up to three years after the last outbreak)

– Not consume drugs, notably by injection

– For a man, not have had sex with another man

You must wait: 

– From 7 days to 4 months if you have had a surgical operation

– 4 months if you have had unprotected sex with a new partner 

– 4 months if you have travelled in a tropical country or in countries where malaria is prevalent (meanwhile, you can give plasma)

– 4 weeks after you have been vaccinated (BCG, yellow fever, rubella, measles, mumps)

– 1 day after you have had a tooth cavity fixed (due to the risk of bacteria passing into the bloodstream)

– 7 days after your teeth have been descaled

– 4 months after a piercing, tattoo or ear-piercing

– 4 months after acupuncture or mesotherapy sessions where these have not been done with personal or single-use needles

(Source : Etablissement français du sang)


A little history

During World War II, Dr General Jean Julliard, in charge of supplying blood to the French units in Italy, used US-produced freeze-dried plasma. At the end of the war he decided to produce this type of plasma with Dr François Hénaff, a veterinarian specialised in cold treatments. Freeze-dried plasma is plasma that has been frozen, then reheated in a vacuum to obtain cryoprecipitate : ice that goes from a solid state to a vaporous one without going through a liquid stage.


Gendarmes having their blood collected by a CTSA nurse in September 2009 (Photo credit: Xavier Pellizzari, ECPAD)

From 1950 to 1987, the CTSA was the leading European centre for production of freeze-dried plasma. In 2010 it launched “PLYO”, freeze-dried plasma secured by Amotosalen which inactivates most of the pathogens (viruses, bacteria and parasites). In order to obtain this PLYO, the plasma of 10 different donors of blood groups types A, B and AB are mixed and then aseptically allocated into single tubes. It comes in the shape of a powder that becomes reconstituted in less than 6 minutes with the water supplied in the kit. It can be used even when the receiver’s blood group is unknown as an immediate treatment to respond to coagulation problems in a seriously haemorrhaging patient.