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Proteins present in plasma are useful to treat certain clotting and immunity diseases and to tend to massive bleeds.

What is plasma?

Plasma is the liquid part of blood (90% of which is made up of water) which contains proteins that are essential to the body. Among other things, plasma contains immunoglobulins, coagulation or clotting factors and albumin.
The plasma can be extracted from a blood bag through centrifugation or through plasmapheresis.
Once extracted, the plasma is quickly frozen to ensure it keeps properly. It can be kept at a -25°C temperature for up to three years.

Why give plasma?


Some medicines that are indispensable for the survival and well-being of numerous patients can only be made from human plasma. In its natural form or in the form of medicines, plasma is used to treat a large number of pathologies.

•    Primary immunodeficiency (present in those affected from birth): lack or absence of immune defences, which makes patients extremely susceptible to all kinds of infection (constant ear infections, sinus infections and bouts of pneumonia, blood and skin infections, severe or even lethal organ damage, etc.).
•    Secondary immunodeficiency (which occurs in the course of life): immune system dysfunction due to external factors (virus infections, chemotherapy, etc.) or auto-immune diseases.

Coagulation factors: bleeding disorders (haemophilia, etc.).

Albumin: haemorrhaging, major burns, surgical operations, etc.

Needless to say this list is not exhaustive. In addition to the above examples, plasma and plasma derivatives are used to deal with many other pathologies.

How does a plasma donation work?

Principle: the blood collected from the donor is made to continuously run through an apheresis machine or a blood cell separator which retains the plasma but then returns the red blood cells, the platelets and the white blood cells to the donor. By doing so, a larger amount of plasma can be collected (between 600 and 650 ml) and the donor, who does not lose any other blood components, is able to donate more often (at least every 2 weeks).


You should reckon with approximately 45 minutes for the plasmapheresis and a total of 75 minutes, including the medical interview and the refreshment upon completion of the donation.


You may donate plasma every 15 days with a maximum of 15 litres per year (23 donations).


This technique requires the use of specific equipment. Which is why it is performed only by appointment at one of our permanent blood collection centres.

Donating is a responsible, voluntary and charitable gesture that goes unpaid.

ARE YOU considering donating PLASMA?

Find the answers to your questions.

Informations about donating plasma (French)


Do you have questions regarding plasma donations?

Consult our FAQ

Do you have questions?


Find a plasma collection centre near you.


Contact us at 0800 92 245 or send us a mail at info@croix-rouge.be.


You can also consult our  « Donor guide » and « Platelets and plasma donations (French) » brochures;


Give it a go in a safe and friendly environment that puts people first!