Many governments of Indian states and union territories launched plasma banks, in regard to the ongoing situation due to the pandemic Novel Coronavirus or COVID-19.
Approved by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) plasma therapy is one of the major treatments these days to cure the disease.
Though plasma therapy is not a proven cure for the deadly COVID-19 infection, it reduces the death risk and helps to cure the patient.
However, to cure a COVID-19 positive patient, plasma of COVID-19 recovered patient is needed.
Hence, the Central Government, state governments, police officials and medical staff urges people and ask them to donate their plasma in the launched plasma banks of their respective states.
Currently, it has shown positive results in Delhi and Mumbai where COVID cases are spiking high. It has also proven to improve the ability of a person to recover from the disease. However, there is more research required to prove its full efficacy in different patient types.
How does plasma therapy work?
A convalescent plasma therapy uses antibodies (a type of protein i.e produced by plasma) from patients who have completely recovered from COVID-19 infection. Here is how this procedure will fight coronavirus in your body.
Blood is taken from a previously infected but completely recovered patient, the plasma component of that blood is separated and that contains the antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 virus. This plasma is injected into an infected person’s body that will fight the virus and neutralise it from spreading.
Once the patient has recovered, he/she will be asked to donate their blood so that their antibodies will be used to treat other infected patients.
The blood sample will be checked for any existing harmful diseases such as Hepatitis B & C including HIV.
The recovered blood will be taken into study and a researcher will extract plasma from the blood that can be injected into an infected person.
Importance of plasma donation:
Plasma donation could heal the patients infected by the Novel Coronavirus. It helps to enhance their immune system and increase the chances of recovery by 70%.
Why is the plasma of COVID-19 recovered patients are only important?
If one is fully recovered from COVID-19, he/she may be able to help patients by donating their plasma. For COVID-19 patients, plasma of recovered patients are important because their plasma now contains COVID-19 antibodies.
How does these plasma antibodies work?
These antibodies provided by plasma of recovered COVID-19 patients get into the body of infected patients and boost the immune system to fight the virus.
What are some basic questions of a plasma donor or plasma donation?
Duration: People who have fully recovered from COVID-19 for at least two weeks are encouraged to consider donating plasma.
Who should donate?
COVID-19 convalescent plasma must only be collected from recovered individuals if they are eligible to donate blood. Individuals must have had a prior diagnosis of COVID-19.
Tests before donation: Get laboratory test and meet other donor criteria before donating plasma for COVID-19 patients.
How one could donate plasma?
One should reach out to nearby clinics or plasma banks to donate plasma after being tested and matching criteria for the same.
What are the risk of plasma therapy?
Though this kind of treatment has proved to be effective over COVID patients, it needs to be done under proper medical supervision keeping in mind underlying risks. Here are some potential risks you need to be aware of.
Since this process involves blood transfusion, there could be a risk of transmitting a prevalent virus from a recovered person. Thus, a doctor must assess the recovered person’s health before opting to conduct blood transfusion.
Every human body reacts in different ways to a treatment or medication. This treatment can not be useful for some patients as it can result in the contraction of an infection.
You could be at risk of contracting the infection once again.
Worldwide plasma therapy gained acknowledgement and is being used for COVID-19 treatment.
Meanwhile, Since, COVID-19 has no proven cure, medication or vaccine, one should keep their immunity strong, follow social distancing and wear masks.
Wearing face masks could reduce 80 % to 90 % chance of being infected or infecting others.
In addition, hand sanitizer and washing hands every 15 minutes is another helpful and easy way to prevent being infected by the virus.
Stay tuned for further details of the Novel Coronavirus.
Stay tuned for further updates.