23 February 2013

Kenya: Teenage Girl in Urgent Need of Blood

Nairobi — A 15-year-old girl admitted to the Nairobi Hospital urgently requires 12 units of fresh blood every day before noon.

Nairobi Hospital Deputy Lab Manager Peter Kariuki says the girl has been bleeding profusely since February 12 and requires the blood every day.

He says donors of any blood group will do to help save the girl's life.

"This will continue until such a time when the doctor says we can stop. That means we are appealing to blood donors to be coming in everyday between eight in the morning and 12 pm.," he said.

He added that it was important to donate the blood by 12 noon each day so that the blood could be screened before it is transfused later in the day.

Donors can go to the blood donor unit at the Nairobi Hospital or call Kariuki on +254 722 334 582.

"The reason why we are asking people to come between those hours is so that we are able to prepare the blood and it is used on the same day," he added.

"If donors come after 12 then it might mean that the blood will be used by other patients yet this girl is very needy. She has already consumed 50 units of blood," he said.

By 12:15 pm on Saturday the hospital had managed to collect 10 units from Kenyans who responded to the appeal.

Fifteen donors, all in good health had responded.

Kariuki further explained that the girl had to get fresh blood each day so that the hospital could remove platelets, which would later be used to help her.

"Her condition requires her to be given some components of the blood; not the whole pint. She only requires platelets which help stop bleeding and because her condition is so severe she requires as many platelets as possible," he explained.

He also emphasized the need to donate blood regularly saying it would help the donor offload extra blood in addition to helping save a life.

"Blood stays in the body for 120 days. It then has to be replaced by the liver so even if you don't donate that blood remains in your system so if you donate you help the liver so that it doesn't have to regulate this blood," he explained.

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