What Can Make Older Adults Ineligible for Blood Donation?

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Donating blood is a fantastic way to give back to the community, and it’s generally safe for aging adults. However, there are certain factors your senior loved one needs to consider before making the decision to donate. Here are a few of the health conditions that may make seniors ineligible. 

High or Low Blood Pressure

If your loved one’s blood pressure is too high or too low, he or she may not be able to give blood. If your parent’s blood pressure is higher than 180/100, he or she will be disqualified from donating blood. On the other hand, if your loved one has low blood pressure, it needs to be above 80/50 for him or her to be eligible to donate. Donating with low blood pressure can make it difficult for the body to adjust to the blood loss, and high blood pressure increases pressure in the arteries.  Blood pressure issues are common among aging adults. There are a variety of age-related health conditions that can make it more challenging for seniors to live independently. However, many of the challenges they face can be easier to address if their families opt for professional homecare. You can rely on expertly trained caregivers to keep your loved one safe and comfortable while aging in place.


Though well-controlled diabetes won’t disqualify your loved one from donating blood, doing so when his or her blood sugar is low isn’t recommended. Low blood sugar coupled with lost blood volume can cause extreme fatigue and lightheadedness. If your loved one has diabetes and would like to donate blood, his or her blood sugar needs to be checked beforehand. 

Heart Disease

Having heart disease isn’t an automatic disqualifier for making a blood donation. However, if your loved one has had a heart attack, bypass surgery, angioplasty, or a change of medication in the past six months, he or she is ineligible to donate blood. If your loved one has a pacemaker, his or her heart rate has to be between 50 and 100 beats per minute in order to be eligible.  Heart disease can make it difficult for aging adults to handle the tasks of daily living independently. If your senior loved one has been diagnosed with a serious condition and needs help with tasks like meal prep, transportation, bathing, and grooming, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of in-home care Des Moines, IA, families can trust. We also offer comprehensive care for seniors with dementia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.


Your loved one cannot give blood if he or she currently has an infection. Your parent must wait until the infection is completely gone before making a donation. If your loved one is taking antibiotics for the infection, he or she needs to wait 10 days after the final dose before giving blood. Seniors who have had Chagas disease, babesiosis, or leishmaniasis cannot donate.  Living with serious health conditions can make it challenging for seniors to age in place. However, they can maintain a higher quality of life with the help of professional live-in care. Des Moines seniors can benefit from assistance with meal prep, bathing, transportation to the doctor’s office, medication reminders, and much more. Rely on the professionals at Home Care Assistance to provide high-quality compassionate care for your loved one. Give us a call today at (515) 264-2438 to learn about our flexible in-home care plans.


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