Australian blood donor James Harrison saving 2 millions peoples
Australian blood donor James Harrison saving 2 millions peoples
Australian blood donor James Harrison has made his last blood donation having helped save the babies of more than two million Australian women
13 May, 2018, 23:30
This could lead to a woman's next baby suffering from hemolytic disease of the newborn (HDN), as the fetus' red blood cells get rejected due to incompatibility of blood type between mother and child.
By then, Harrison had been donating whole blood regularly for more than a decade.
"I hope it's a record that somebody breaks, because it will mean they are dedicated to the cause", Mr Harrison said of his last donation.
"The end of a long run", he said as he was making his last blood donation at the Town Hall Donor Centre.
More than 3 million doses of Anti-D containing James' blood have been issued to Aussie mothers with a negative blood type since 1967. Australian Red Cross Blood Service officials believe Harrison has saved the lives of 2.4 million unborn babies, based on the estimated 17 percent of pregnant women in the country who require the injections.
"In Australia, up until about 1967, there were literally thousands of babies dying each year, doctors didn't know why, and it was bad", Jemma Falkenmire, of the Australian Red Cross Blood Service, told Gupta. At age 81, he had already passed the age limit allowed for donors, and the blood service had decided Harrison should stop donating to protect his health, the Sydney Morning Heraldreported.
When he was 14 years old, Harrison underwent major surgery and depended on blood transfusions to save his life.
Despite donating for 50 years, James said he's "never once watched the needle go in".
Ms Falkenmire said that up until 1967, 'there were literally thousands of babies dying each year, doctors didn't know why and it was very bad. "Women were having miscarriages and babies were being born with brain damage". Australia was one of the first countries to discover a blood donor with this antibody, so it was quite revolutionary at the time'. "It's one of my talents, probably my only talent, is that I can be a blood donor". That's a risky condition that develops when a woman has rhesus-negative blood (RhD negative) and has a baby in her womb with RhD positive blood. They realized they could administer Anti-D to mothers and save the babies. These donors' unique antibodies, when injected into an Rh-negative mother, prevent her body from attacking the Rh-positive baby's cells. Regardless of what the reason is, the publication stressed that Harrison always remained humble during each succeeding blood donation he made.
Harrison's naturally produced Rh+ antibodies can be used to intercept the baby's Rh+ blood cells from ever coming into contact with the mother's blood.
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