BACKGROUND: Concerned about the effect of multiple platelet (PLT) product donation on donor health, in 2005 the FDA proposed restrictions limiting the number of PLT products donated in 12 months. This was based on limited published evidence. To provide information on the effect of PLT donation on PLT and lymphocyte (LYM) count, hematologic variables were examined in a group of multiple PLT product donors.
STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS: Donors with at least two apheresis PLT donations, one of which was a double- or triple-PLT product, were examined. Donor demographics, number of blood donations, and number of apheresis PLT products donated were determined. Hematologic variables were evaluated at the first and last donation.
RESULTS: A total of 471 donors (median age, 48.8 years; 55% male; median time between first and last donations, 72 weeks) were studied. The median number of PLT donations was 4 (range, 1-34) with the median number of PLT products donated being 7 (range, 2-65). The median PLT count demonstrated a significant increase (14 × 109/L, p = 0.0001) while both white blood cell and LYM counts showed significant decreases (−0.2 × 109/L, p = 0.0052; and −0.06 × 109/L, p = 0.0001, respectively). After adjusting for sex and whole-blood donations, LYM count demonstrated a significant decline associated with both number of donations (−0.01 × 109/L, p = 0.01) and number of products donated (−0.005 × 109/L, p = 0.02). PLT count demonstrated a significant increase associated with number of products donated (0.42 × 109/L, p = 0.03).
CONCLUSION: Significant but small LYM decrease and PLT increase were seen. Limitations on the number of apheresis PLT products donated within 12 months do not seem warranted due to PLT or LYM count changes.