What is the price of a pint of blood in Nigeria?
Goodevening, my name is Agbonlahor and I am 35 year old. My wife has fibroids and have been booked for myomectomy in one the teaching hospitals in Lagos on Friday next week. The gynaecologist said we will need to make 2 pints of blood available before her surgery as she may be transfused during the surgery and moreover it is the standard practice worldwide.
My wife’s blood group is O Rhesus positive and right now, because O positive blood is in high demand, the hospital does not have it their blood bank and I was told I cannot donate because I am A positive. The lab scientist in the blood bank has told me to go and buy the two bags of O positive blood in some private labs outside and bring to him for screening.
Doc, my question is how much will I pay for a pint of blood outside and is it safe? Thank you.
Thank you Mr. Agbonlahor for reaching out. Now straight to your questions.
The price of a pint of blood varies according to the blood group, Rhesus factor, availability of the blood and other special conditions.
Generally, we have 4 types of blood groups, A, B, AB and O. About 85 percent of Nigerians are O positive and therefore relatively more available and cheaper to buy compared to others. The O blood group is also the universal donor making it more easy to get and most of the blood in the blood banks are O Rhesus positive.
A pint of O positive blood is around #10, 000 naira. For O negative blood, it is scarce and hard to get. Most labs with O negative pint of blood sells it for around #15,000 to #18,000 naira.
For A positive pint of blood, it is sold for #10,000 naira since it is not in high demand. Moreover, Apositive persons can receive blood Opositive so people hardly request for it. A negative blood is sold for #13,000 naira.
B positive or blood group AB blood are hardly in demand. Sometimes, they are sold for #8,000 naira in special situations.
Sometimes, some requirements may be requested by the doctor in special conditions for a group of patients. For example, patients with sickle cell anemia that are having a crisis are requested to buy O positive genotype AA pint of blood for transfusion to stop or relief the sickle cell crisis. Genotype AA O positive pint of blood is hard to get and somewhat harder to screen. It cost about #17,000 naira for a pint. If the sickler is Onegative, it is more expensive.
Sometimes your doctor may request for fresh whole blood (freshly donated blood), fresh frozen plasma or cryoprecipitate. Be rest assured that these are far more expensive.
On the issue of safety? Blood bought from “outside” or private labs is safe because it will be screened for HIV, hepatitis B and C, syphilis, and other infectious diseases by the labs before sale. Moreover, when you take the pints of blood to the hospital where they will operate on your wife, it will be re-screened and if it does pass the screening tests, you will be told to return it.
Please buy from trusted labs. I wish your wife a successful surgery and quick recovery from surgery. Cheers.
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