Transfusion medicine began only 200 years ago and has been perfected in the last 50 years (Ness, & Schmidt, 2006). There are still new discoveries and new technologies being made in the field of blood transfusions. Blood transfusions today are used to treat blood loss, anemia, and other hemolytic diseases. Over 200 years ago blood was believed to have many different uses. During this time period, there was no knowledge of inter-species immunity problems, any anti-coagulant, or proper functioning equipment.
Humans have always had a curiosity about blood and what exactly its purpose in the body. Blood was believed to have many mysterious properties. It was thought that it could transfer someone’s personality if put into another person. Blood was also thought to possess the ability to make the old become young again. Between AD23 and AD79, Pliny the Elder, a Roman author and philosopher, wrote that spectators would rush into the arena to drink the blood of dying gladiators. The people believed that by drinking the gladiators’ blood, they would receive their strength and bravery. Claudius Glaneus assumed that by drinking the blood of a dog, rabies could be cured. Egyptians believed that by drinking blood and applying blood to the skin it could keep someone youthful. This is where it is thought that the legend of vampirism began. Most of the early references to “blood transfusion” were not actually blood transfusions but blood ingestion (Learoyd, 2012). Pope Innocent VIII, Giovanni Battista Cibo, was said to have been repeatedly transfused with the blood of three ten year old boys between 1490 and 1492. There has been much deba...
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...e hepatitis B virus (HBV), hepatitis C virus (HCV), the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and syphilis. A study was conducted in China to see the percentage of donors that have a transfusion-transmissible infection and what classifications make a person more likely to have one of these infections. Some of the classifications are education, ethnicity, age, and number of donations. Donors were tested for hepatitis B antigen through a screening test before donating blood, and if they tested for hepatitis B, they were excluded from the study. The results concluded that there is a higher rate of transfusion-transmissible infections among first time donors, older donors, and donors other than the ethnicity Hans Chinese. Donors with a higher education were less likely to have a transfusion-transmissible infection (Zaller, Nelson, Ness, P., Wen, Kewir, Bai, & Shan, 2006).
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