1. I just had a flu jab today. Quick in and out, no need for the tourniquet thing. I will have something like that for when I give blood next week, though.

  2. I tell you what – if the pharmacist at Walgreen’s stood in front of me, TALKING and WAVING the needle at my face, I’d be gone before he finished that sentence! I DID walk out of a blood draw once, after three attempts. And TRIED to do so from an ambulance taking me to ER (but I was tied down, so couldn’t get away).

    The only reason I could tolerate tattooing is that the needles are shrouded in some kind of thingie and I never saw a one.

  3. Is ‘pumpkin spice flu’ a thing now? A new strain, perhaps?Can you get vaccinated against pumpkin spice?

    (BTW, I think I mentioned I bought a bag of Dunkin’ Donuts PPS coffee last week, for Hubby to make at home. It’s so awful, my stomach churns when he makes it and the smell fills the house. Just a warning, in case anyone else is a tempted impulsive shopper as I am. thank dog HE likes it, so it will, eventually, be gone and we’ll return to DD’s French Caramel.)

  4. @ narmitaj – I cannot believe that they will take a blood donation that soon after a flu shot. I tried to donate blood last month, and they turned me down because I had taken an ibruprofen tablet in the previous week.

  5. I once upon a time had an emergency and had to use several pints of donated blood. I tried to donate, if only in gratitude for this life-saving act. But I can’t ’cause of taking anti-depressant . . . oh well, I tried.

  6. @ Kilby – I am in the UK, where the info is “Adult flu vaccines are “killed” vaccines. The National Blood Service does not require any delay between vaccination and blood donation”. But I’ll tell them when I get there.

    Also in the USA it is OK according to the Red Cross: Flu Vaccination Does Not Prevent Blood Donation.

    There is a pretty comprehensive 32-item questionnaire of my possible recent medical, sexual, travel, tattoo, druggy activities that I have to fill in each time. Question 1 asks about taking any painkillers, aspirin, anti-inflammatories or other medicines in the previous seven days, so probably Ibuprofen is an issue here too and I would be ejected at that stage.

    I was once turned away because I was coming down with a cold, though it is OK if you are coming to the end of a cold. https://www.blood.co.uk/who-can-give-blood/ You can’t give blood within four months if you have had an ear-piercing, etc., but a flu jab piercing is fine.

    Andréa – in the UK it seems you can’t give blood if you have received (or think you may have received) blood or blood products since January 1980, so “giving back” in the way you attempted doesn’t appear to be permitted.

  7. In the US, they ask (on a similar questionnaire) about taking aspirin within the past 7 days – but in fact it’s only a deal-breaker if you’re giving double red (I can’t remember what the technical term is – it’s not aspiration but something like that). That’s when they take out two pints of blood (or more?), spin out the red blood cells, then put the plasma etc back in you. And aspirin, being a blood-thinner, is problematic for that. It is not a problem for a normal blood donation (good thing, I take aspirin all too frequently – I’d never be able to donate). I’ve no idea about ibuprofen – I don’t think they ask about it, but as I never take it (it doesn’t work for me) I may simply not remember the question.

  8. Anything to get people to vaccinate.
    As for blood donation, I discovered that I suffered from atrial fibrillation when I flunked my pre-donation test, the first time I flunked in 40 years of donation. So donating blood can save other’s lives, but it can also save your life. I had a physical two weeks before which didn’t catch it.
    I can’t donate any more being on blood thinners, alas.

  9. I gave platelets and plasma last week, 1 week after a flu shot. They don’t allow it for certain vaccines, but flu vaccine is fine. Here in New York, you aren’t supposed to donate whole blood or especially platelets if you have taken ibuprofen or aspirin within 48 hours, not a week.

  10. The blood donation questionnaire asks about getting immunizations, which includes the flu shot, but then, when you mark “yes”, and tell them it’s a flu shot, they mark that as just fine. A lot of the questions, even if you answer “yes”, that just means you get a followup question, not necessarily a deferral.

  11. I used to give blood regularly, they’d do the apheresis thing cause I have type O, and since I lived right next door to the hospital, it was convenient. However, as the hospital next door keeps growing and expanding like a cancer, I lost the good feeling vibe of pitching in and doing something that needs doing, and got more the feeling of being a rube being fleeced by the conglomerate profit machine. I’d read something about the blood trading market, where places swap out blood that isn’t immediately needed before it goes bad with places that do need it, and that already left kind of a bad taste in my mouth (so when you call me to say that you’re running low on blood, really you mean your stocks for swapping with other places could use some augmenting…); also, if you actually stay at the hospital and get blood, they charge you up the wazoo for it, a couple thousand I think, not that it’s easy to find out before hand… So, they treat it on one end like this great altruistic volunteer thing, but on the other end it is a business, and a profitable business at that. I was having very mixed feelings. Anyway, the hospital industrial complex then outgrew the old blood center, conglomerating it with the Red Cross so it was even less local and immediate, so all the nurses and people I’d gotten to know over the years at the old center were gone, the place to go was different, and it was all even more anonymous and corporate, so I’ve just stopped bothering…

  12. “However, as the hospital next door keeps growing and expanding like a cancer,”

    Ah, the right phrase at the right time . . . love it.

  13. So, Andrea, just where is this tattoo? And you can anticipate my follow on questions, so please proceed with the rest of the story.

  14. A ‘bracelet’ of pansies, my Mother’s favorite flower, in her memory . . . tattoo created on 2/14/10 . . .

    Would love to get more, but was not able to decide on design(s), so I never did. Yet.

  15. And no, it didn’t hurt, and took about an hour or so; there are actually three flowers. Lots of ‘I thought that was really a bracelet’ comments. My doctor wasn’t happy I’d done that, BUT she said, ‘If you tell anyone I said this, I’ll deny it, but I LOOOVE that tattoo and what it represents.’

    I was today looking at the tattoo Conchita Wurst has on her back, of her mother, but I thought . . . why would you put a lovely (and expensive and painful) tattoo where you never see it yourself? It’s like the pink pawprint I have on one of my teeth – *I* never see it, unless I stand in front of the mirror and smile at myself. As if.

  16. Been told by a variety of doctors and their staffs that I would have a problem of donating blood – they have trouble getting enough from me for tests. When we had to get blood tests to get married, I waited for Robert to have his first as was terrified and they gave him one of his mom’s Valium for him to be able to take it.. (Still don’t tell him if he is getting one until the night before.)

    I went the next day and he came with me. The only blood test I had ever had (unless I had as a baby) was a finger stab when I was sick back as a child in the 1960s. So, pretending not to be terrified I went in for the blood test, leaving him in the waiting room. The employee kept doing all the things they do before the test and then could not find a vein. She finally found one and stuck the needle in – “POP”. She hit air. She tried again – same thing. I suddenly did not feel well and asked for a drink of water – I was schlepping along to the water fountain and passed the open door to the waiting room, I changed to enthusiasm and waved at him, then schlepped to the water, then went back repeating same in reverse. The were about to send to me to a lab that could take blood from my ankle when another employee said she could do it and did.

    Did not have another blood test – or attempt at same for a couple of decades. By then MIL and I were spending time together (as Robert could not deal with her and his sister) and she told me to ask for a butterfly needle – which I have done since. Even with same sometimes it can take a couple of tries to get blood from me.

  17. “. . . ask for a butterfly needle – which I have done since. Even with same sometimes it can take a couple of tries to get blood from me.”

    I’ve had these issues, also, tho I’ll save you all the gory stories. HOWEVER, I’ve learned to 1) drink a lot of water before blood draw, even the fasting ones; 2) use butterfly needle, but mine is on top of the hand. For some reason, that works.

    I have a blood draw every six months (thanks, Medicare!), and I am no longer terrified – the process takes about two minutes (as contrasted with the one draw several years ago . . . after three tries, I told ’em to get someone who knows what s/he’s doing, got up and left.

    GAH – just THINKING about this turns my stomach!

  18. Andréa – I know exactly what you mean. I only have to generally go once a year. This year the phlebotomist told me that I had a “rolling vein” – which apparently means that it moves as she tried to hit it – yet she did so on the first try with not even a sting.

  19. Back to pie . . . a quote I read today:

    ‘“Thanksgiving pie is gross,” he said. “The only good pie is key lime pie, which you’re not serving unless Thanksgiving dinner is taking place in the parking lot of a Jimmy Buffett concert.” ‘

    I’d go if I knew REAL Key Lime pie was bein’ served . . .

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