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Each component has a different job important to how your blood works. If people lose blood from surgery or injury, there is only one place to turn - volunteer blood donors. Community Blood Center offers a fulltime certified teacher and a blood education program designed for grades K-12. Students who register to donate three or more times during high school earn a Red Cord to wear at graduation events. Think of your blood as a fruit smoothie made up of about four basic ingredients blended together, all of them important:Blood cells are produced in the marrow of bones, especially the vertebrae, ribs, hips, skull and sternum.

A unique cell, the stem cell, is the "parent of all cells. Red blood cells are disc-shaped cells containing hemoglobin, which enables the cells to pick up and deliver oxygen to all parts of the body, then pick up carbon dioxide and remove it from tissues.

White cells are the body's primary defense against infection. They can move out of the blood stream and reach tissues being invaded by microbes and foreign bodies. Plasma is a pale yellow mixture of water, proteins and salts. Think of your blood as a fruit smoothie made up of about four basic ingredients blended together, all of them important: Red Blood Cells White Blood Cells Platelets Plasma Blood cells are produced in the marrow of bones, especially the vertebrae, ribs, hips, skull and sternum.

Red Blood Cells - (erythrocytes) Red blood cells are disc-shaped cells containing hemoglobin, which enables the cells to pick up and deliver oxygen to all parts of the body, then pick up carbon dioxide and remove it from tissues. Make up about 40 percent of your blood.

Carry oxygen from the lungs to tissue, and carry back carbon dioxide to the lungs. Contain the molecule hemoglobin which carries the oxygen and makes blood red. Live about 120 days and are removed by the spleen. Have an after-donation shelf life of 35-42 days. Most needed for patients with significant blood loss through trauma, surgery, or anemia.

White Blood Cells - (leukocytes) White cells are the body's primary defense against infection. There are several different types of white blood cells.

Lymphocytes are key parts of our immune system and help our bodies fight infection. White blood cells may themselves harbor infectious disease and some pathogens are more concentrated in them than other blood products. Leukoreduction is the process of removing white blood cells from blood supplied for transfusion.

They are the sticky cells that clump together to form clots that control bleeding by sticking to the lining of blood vessels. When exposed to air a chemical reaction causes a protein in the blood, called fibrinogen, to turn into long threads which form a scab over the wound. Survive in the circulatory system for about 10 days and are removed by the spleen. Outside the body they can be stored for only five days. Used to help patients with malignant diseases who have low or abnormal platelets due to the disease itself or chemotherapy.

An average of four to eight units of platelets from whole blood donations (or one apheresis donation) is needed to meet one patient's needs. Plasma Plasma is a pale yellow mixture of water, proteins and salts. This is the liquid portion of the blood. Plasma is 90 percent water and makes up more than half of total blood volume. Other 10 percent is protein molecules, including enzymes, clotting agents, immune system components, plus other body essentials such as vitamins and hormones.

Helps to maintain blood pressure and keeps everything moving through the circulatory system, supplying critical proteins and serving as an exchange system for vital minerals. Plasma is frozen after collection and can be stored up to one year.

Used to extract cryoprecipitate, a substance rich in Factor VIII, which is needed by hemophilia patients. Plasma purchased at for-profit centers is sold for research and some medical therapies. FIND A LOCATION First Time Donor. We'll guide you through the safe and simple donation process and answer any questions you have.

There are eight common blood types, which are determined by the presence of certain antigens. BLOOD TYPES Parts of Blood Blood is a mixture of 4 components. Blood is a living fluid.