The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) says about 5 million people in the United States receive blood transfusion yearly.

One could need blood transfusion for various reasons such as a severe injury, surgery, a medical condition. Thus, blood donation is a great way to contribute to saving lives.

Before donating blood, you need to go through various tests and answer a series of questions related to your health & lifestyle. So, now, you are a marijuana user, would it disqualify you from donating blood? Since medical researchers have concluded that cannabis is effective in alleviating symptoms of various conditions and more patients are applying for medical marijuana card Fontana. Is there any problem consuming cannabis before or after blood donation? Let’s learn!

Does Smoking Cannabis Disqualify You From Blood Donation?

The short answer to this question is no. However, the staff in blood drive might turn you away if you are high. It’s good to refrain from smoking a few days before the appointment and a day afterward. Why not to smoke before? Because it may increase your blood pressure, thus disqualifying you from donating. And, why not after donation? Because it may cause dizziness.

Factors that disqualify from donating blood are

  • Being positive in AIDS or hepatitis viruses
  • Taking illicit drugs
  • Having a blood clotting disorder
  • A tattoo & piercing last year
  • Suffering from leukemia, lymphoma & other forms of blood cancer
  • Having had the Ebola virus
  • Feeling sick before the appointment day
  • Having blood transfusion or organ transplant in the past year

Blood Bank Laboratory Tests

  • Blood & Rh typing
  • Tests for infections, including
    • HIV
    • HTLV
    • Syphilis
    • Chagas disease
    • Hepatitis B & C

Blood banks don’t test for tobacco, marijuana, and nicotine. Thus, both regular & occasional cannabis users can donate blood, provided they meet all the qualifications. However, marijuana may take longer to exit from the system, especially if you are a regular cannabis consumer.

However, marijuana’s effects may vary from one person to another. The same goes for the amount of time THC stays in the system. Usually, marijuana is detectable for up to 30 days.

After THC is absorbed in the blood, it is broken down in the liver. It has more than 80 metabolites including THCCOOH and 11-OH-THC, which stays longer than tetrahydrocannabinol. These metabolites are usually detected in the drug tests.

How long marijuana compounds stay in your body depend on various factors. These include-

  • Whether you are a regular or occasional marijuana user
  • Amount of marijuana you take
  • Your metabolism rate
  • BMI
  • Method of consumption of marijuana
  • Type of strain you smoke

What Does The American Red Cross Have to Say?

It’s now clear that smoking marijuana doesn’t disqualify you from donating blood. Here’s what The Red Cross say-

“While the Red Cross does not encourage the use of controlled substances, marijuana, cigarettes or alcohol use does not necessarily disqualify a person from giving blood. Potential donors cannot give while under the influence of licit or illicit drugs or alcohol. Legal or illegal use of marijuana is not otherwise a cause of deferral.”

To sum up, donating blood is just like giving someone a gift of life. However, there are various requirements for those who want to donate blood, such as 17 years of age, physical fitness, body weight over 110 pounds, etc. If you are a marijuana consumer, you need not worry as blood banks don’t test for the presence of cannabis in the body. The American Red Cross says it’s fine for marijuana users to donate blood. Marijuana’s effects may vary from one person to another, and depend on various factors such as BMI, body weight, metabolism rate, frequency of cannabis consumption, type of strain, method of consumption, etc. However, it’s good not to smoke cannabis at least a day before and after the appointment.
Talk to a licensed doctor to apply for your medical marijuana card NY.