And on a completely unrelated note

The Red Cross finally wrote back. I called them, weeks ago, to ask why they don’t use the blood of the dead for transfusions. I had been curious about this ever since I found out they did this in Russia for thirty years with no problems at all. According to my information, as long as the person has been dead for less than six hours and as long as they didn’t have any nasty diseases, their blood is perfectly okay to put into living people. With the constant need for blood and all the appeals for donors, I asked, why does the RC not take advantage of this resource? After all, they take the blood out during the embalming process anyway, so it’s not like anything is really lost.

So the RC has replied, finally, to my query. They said they don’t use cadavers’ blood because the FDA doesn’t allow it, because of concerns about safety. They ask living donors a bunch of questions to make sure they’re not likely to have any nasty diseases, but you can’t ask a cadaver. Or, you can, but you can’t expect to get an answer. So…nada. My dream of spearheading a revolution in the field of blood transfusion has been squashed flat.

And in other news, a new photo of me. Actually, this pic is about a year old, but it’s the most recent one I have. It’s not very good quality — my boyfriend took it with his cell phone — but he says I look really pretty in it so I thought I’d show myself off.

Me at Jeff Dunham show, April 2008
Me at Jeff Dunham show, April 2008

4 thoughts on “And on a completely unrelated note

  1. Aimee March 26, 2009 / 12:57 am

    Oh, I love Jeff Dunham! “Silence! I keel you!” lolol He’s coming to the Delaware State Fair this summer. I’d love to go see him, but tickets are $40-45 each, which makes me hesitate, to put it mildly.
    I read a book last week, an older one (1994) called “Death to Dust” all about what happens to us after we die, and they touched on the cadaver-blood issue at one point. I’m guessing also that using cadaver blood would be impractical because, if you die in the hospital, you are likely to have a lot of medications in your bloodstream that they wouldn’t want to go into the blood supply.
    How does that work, though? I mean, if you donate blood, what do they do about medications you may be taking regularly? I suppose I should be asking my dad this as he is a blood donor who takes heart and esophagus medicine daily. Do they have a list of acceptable drugs and unacceptable ones?

  2. Meaghan March 26, 2009 / 10:12 am

    I tried to donate blood once, but I didn’t have enough iron in me. I recall the questionaire I had to fill out asked about certain diseases and, I think, whether I’d taken antibiotics lately. I don’t remember much; it was six years ago.

    I’ve read Death to Dust too. It is excellent.

  3. Dream July 11, 2009 / 11:46 pm

    NO problems at all? Don’t be naive. Soviet era medicine was dreadful. Where did you read that?

    • Meaghan July 12, 2009 / 12:50 am

      In Mary Roach’s Stiff: the Curious Lives of Human Cadavers.

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