A while back, I was asked if medications for ADHD would prevent someone from being able to give blood. After some research, I can say the answer is: Probably not.
Having ADHD, or taking medications for ADHD does not prevent you from giving blood. You do have to provide information on your health history and any medications you take. This includes medications for ADHD, such as stimulant medications. If you take additional medications, such as something to help you sleep or antidepressants, you should include that information on the questionnaire as well. These types of medications are not included in the list of medications that prevent someone from giving blood. However, each person’s health history is taken into account and a blood screening test will determine if you are able to give blood.
Below is a list of those medications which render you ineligible for giving blood or at least will require a more in depth screening before being allowed to donate blood:
- Accutane © (Amnesteem, Claravis, Sotret, isotretinoin)
- Avodart © (dutasteride)
- Coumadin © (warfarin)
- Embrel (etanercept)
- Feldene (piroxicam)
- Growth Hormone from Human Pituitary Glands
- Hepatitis B Immune Globulin
- Humira (adalimumab)
- Insulin from Cows (Bovine, or Beef, Insulin)
- Plavix © (clopidogrel)
- Propecia © (finasteride)
- Proscar © (finasteride)
- Remicade (infliximab)
- Soriatane © (acitretin)
- Tegison © (etretinate)
- Ticlid © (ticlopidine)
- Experimental drugs or vitamins and unlicensed vitamins
In addition, if you have had a vaccination, you may still be eligible, but there is usually a 30 day waiting period which begins the day you received the vaccine.
If you are on any of the above medications and still wish to give blood, contact your local Red Cross and ask how long you will need to be off your medication to be eligible for giving blood.
Giving blood can help save a life. It is easy and relatively painless. If you don’t know where to go to donate blood, you can search by zip code on the Red Cross website.
Some things to remember when donating blood:
- Drink plenty of fluids, both before and after to help your body recover and rebuild your blood supply.
- Don’t skip meals the day you donate blood.
- Refrain from having a cigarette for at least one hour after giving blood.
Blood donation centers provide a place to rest as well as refreshments. Take advantage of this and don’t rush off as soon as you are done. This gives your body a chance to recover and will reduce the chances of becoming dizzy.
Eileen Bailey is a freelance health writer. She is the author of What Went Right: Reframe Your Thinking for a Happier Now, Idiot’s Guide to Adult ADHD, Idiot’s Guide to Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Essential Guide to Overcoming Obsessive Love, and Essential Guide to Asperger’s Syndrome. She can be found on Twitter @eileenmbailey and on Facebook at eileenmbailey.