How to Properly Store Blood at Home: A Guide for Safekeeping

Blood is a crucial component of our body, carrying oxygen and nutrients to different parts. It’s vital for emergency situations where blood loss occurs, such as accidents or surgeries. In some cases, people need to store blood at home due to certain medical conditions or family history.

Storing blood at home requires proper knowledge and equipment. Without the right tools and techniques, storing blood could result in contamination or spoilage. Here are some tips on how to store blood at home safely and effectively.

Ensure Sterility

Before storing any kind of fluid like blood, it’s essential to keep the storage container clean and sterile. Use an airtight container made from glass or plastic that has been sterilized using boiling water for 10-15 minutes before use. Make sure that all utensils used during this process must be free from bacteria by washing them with warm soapy water before starting.

Label Everything Accurately

It’s necessary always to label containers properly when storing anything but especially important when dealing with bodily fluids like blood because they can pose serious health risks if not handled correctly. Use clear labeling methods stating what type of fluid you’re preserving along with the date collected.

Select Appropriate Storage Temperature

The temperature requirement differs based on whether you’re storing whole-blood samples or specific components such as plasma or red cells.
For whole-blood samples: Store in refrigerators between 1 -6°C (33 -42°F). Blood stored this way is suitable for transfusion purposes within several weeks.
For specific components: Red cells can be frozen up-to -80°C (-112°F) while plasma is best kept frozen below freezing point until needed.

Avoid Overfilling Containers

When collecting your sample remember never fill containers beyond their maximum capacity limit since overfilled bottles may burst causing risk for spillage which increases exposure risk. Additionally, never re-use containers that have held blood samples for any other contents as it can lead to cross-contamination.

Monitor the Storage Process

Monitoring your stored blood is critical over time. Keep a log of when each sample was collected and how long it has been stored so that you know when to discard older samples, indicating when they may no longer be viable for their intended use.

Additionally, track the temperature during storage by using a thermometer in your refrigerator or freezer where you store the sample. Ensure this device’s accuracy by checking it against another known calibrated thermometer periodically.

With these precautions taken into consideration, storing blood at home becomes much easier and ensures that samples are safe to use whenever required. However, if there’s any doubt about contamination or spoilage issues with preserved fluid consults with medical professionals immediately for proper disposal methods rather than risking health complications when used later on time.

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