Blood Donation Abstracts 1


Iron deficiency in blood donors: analysis of enrollment data from the REDS-II Donor Iron Status Evaluation (RISE) study.
            (Cable et al., 2011) Download
BACKGROUND:  Regular blood donors are at risk of iron deficiency, but characteristics that predispose to this condition are poorly defined. STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS:  A total of 2425 red blood cell donors, either first-time (FT) or reactivated donors (no donations for 2 years) or frequent donors, were recruited for follow-up. At enrollment, ferritin, soluble transferrin receptor (sTfR), and hemoglobin were determined. Donor variables included demographics, smoking, dietary intake, use of iron supplements, and menstrual and/or pregnancy history. Models to predict two measures of iron deficiency were developed: Absent iron stores (AIS) were indicated by a ferritin level of less than 12 ng/mL and iron-deficient erythropoiesis (IDE) by a log(sTfR/ferritin) value of 2.07 or greater. RESULTS:  A total of 15.0% of donors had AIS and 41.7% IDE. In frequent donors, 16.4 and 48.7% of males had AIS and IDE, respectively, with corresponding proportions of 27.1 and 66.1% for females. Donation intensity was most closely associated with AIS and/or IDE (odds ratios from 5.3 to 52.2 for different donation intensity compared to FT donors). Being female, younger, and/or menstruating also increased the likelihood of having AIS and/or IDE, as did having a lower weight. Marginally significant variables for AIS and/or IDE were being a nonsmoker, previous pregnancy, and not taking iron supplements. Dietary variables were in general unrelated to AIS and/or IDE, as was race and/or ethnicity. CONCLUSION:  A large proportion of both female and male frequent blood donors have iron depletion. Donation intensity, sex and/or menstrual status, weight, and age are important independent predictors of AIS and/or IDE. Reducing the frequency of blood donation is likely to reduce the prevalence of iron deficiency among blood donors, as might implementing routine iron supplementation.

Getting the iron out: phlebotomy for Alzheimer's disease
            (Dwyer et al., 2009) Download
This communication explores the temporal link between the age-associated increase in body iron stores and the age-related incidence of Alzheimer's disease (AD), the most prevalent cause of senile dementia. Body iron stores that increase with age could be pivotal to AD pathogenesis and progression. Increased stored iron is associated with common medical conditions such as diabetes and vascular disease that increase risk for development of AD. Increased stored iron could also promote oxidative stress/free radical damage in vulnerable neurons, a critical early change in AD. A ferrocentric model of AD described here forms the basis of a rational, easily testable experimental therapeutic approach for AD, which if successful, would be both widely applicable and inexpensive. Clinical studies have shown that calibrated phlebotomy is an effective way to reduce stored iron safely and predictably without causing anemia. We hypothesize that reducing stored iron by calibrated phlebotomy to avoid iron deficiency will improve cerebrovascular function, slow neurodegenerative change, and improve cognitive and behavioral functions in AD. The hypothesis is eminently testable as iron reduction therapy is useful for chronic diseases associated with iron excess such as nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), atherosclerosis, hereditary hemochromatosis and thalassemia. Testing this hypothesis could provide valuable insight into the causation of AD and suggest novel preventive and treatment strategies.

Donation frequency, iron loss, and risk of cancer among blood donors.
            (Edgren et al., 2008) Download
BACKGROUND:  Long-term deleterious effects of repeated blood donations may be masked by the donors' healthy lifestyle. To investigate possible effects of blood donation and iron loss through blood donation on cancer incidence while minimizing "healthy donor effects," we made dose-response comparisons within a cohort of Swedish and Danish blood donors. METHODS:  We used a nested case-control study design, in which case patients were defined as all donors who were diagnosed with a malignancy between their first recorded blood donation and study termination (n = 10866). Control subjects (n = 107140) were individually matched on sex, age, and county of residence. Using conditional logistic regression, we estimated relative risks of cancer according to number of blood donations made or estimated iron loss 3-12 years before a case patient was diagnosed with cancer. All statistical tests were two-sided. RESULTS:  No clear association was observed between number of donations and risk of cancer overall. However, between the lowest (< or = median, < 0.75 g) and highest (> 90th percentile, > 2.7 g) categories of estimated iron loss, there was a trend (P(trend) < .001) of decreasing risk for cancers of the liver, lung, colon, stomach, and esophagus, which are thought to be promoted by iron overload (combined odds ratio [OR] = 0.70, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.58 to 0.84), but only among men and only with a latency of 3-7 years. The risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma was higher among frequent plasma donors (> 25 vs 0 donations, OR = 2.14, 95% CI = 1.22 to 3.74). CONCLUSIONS:  Repeated blood donation was not associated with increased or decreased risk of cancer overall. The lack of consistency across latency periods casts doubt on an apparent association between reduced cancer risk and iron loss in men. The positive association between frequent plasma donation and risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma deserves further exploration.

Iron stores, blood donation, and insulin sensitivity and secretion.
            (Fernández-Real et al., 2005) Download
BACKGROUND:  Epidemiologists have observed that blood donation is associated with decreased risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. METHODS:  We investigated the relationship between iron stores and insulin sensitivity, after controlling for known confounding factors, and compared insulin sensitivity between blood donors and individuals who had never donated blood (nondonors). In 181 men, insulin sensitivity and insulin secretion were evaluated through frequently sampled intravenous glucose tolerance tests with minimal model analysis. Men who donated blood between 6 months and 5 years before inclusion (n = 21) were carefully matched with nondonors (n = 66) for age, body mass index, waist-to-hip ratio, and cardiovascular risk profile, including blood lipids, blood pressure, and smoking status. RESULTS:  Frequent blood donors (2-10 donations) had increased insulin sensitivity [3.42 (1.03) vs 2.45 (1.2) x 10(-4) x min(-1) x mIU/L; P = 0.04], decreased insulin secretion [186 (82) vs 401.7 (254) mIU/L x min; P <0.0001], and significantly lower iron stores [serum ferritin, 101.5 (74) vs 162 (100) microg/L; P = 0.017] than nondonors, but the 2 groups had similar blood hematocrits and blood hemoglobin concentrations. CONCLUSIONS:  Blood donation is simultaneously associated with increased insulin sensitivity and decreased iron stores. Stored iron seems to impact negatively on insulin action even in healthy people, and not just in classic pathologic conditions associated with iron overload (hemochromatosis and hemosiderosis). According to these observations, it is imperative that a definition of excessive iron stores in healthy people be formulated.

Phlebotomy treatment for elimination of perfluoroalkyl acids in a highly exposed family: a retrospective case-series.
            (Genuis et al., 2014) Download
BACKGROUND:  Perfluoroalkyl acids (PFAAs) are a family of commonly used synthetic chemicals that have become widespread environmental contaminants. In human serum, perfluorohexane sulfonate (PFHxS), perflurooctane sulfonate (PFOS), and perfluorooctanoate (PFOA) are most frequently detected, in part owing to their long elimination half-lives of between 3.8 yrs (PFOA) and 8.5 yrs (PFHxS). These PFAAs also cross the placenta and have been associated with developmental toxicity, and some are considered likely human carcinogens. Interventions to eliminate PFAAs in highly contaminated individuals would reduce future health risks, but minimal research has been conducted on methods to facilitate accelerated human clearance of these persistent substances. METHODS:  Six patients with elevated serum concentrations from a single family were treated by intermittent phlebotomy over a 4-5 year period at intervals similar to, or less frequent than what is done for routine blood donation at Canadian Blood Services. The apparent elimination half-life (HLapp) for PFHxS, PFOS, and PFOA in this treated population was calculated in each patient and compared to the intrinsic elimination half-lives (HLin) from a literature reference population of untreated fluorochemical manufacturing plant retirees (n = 26, age >55 yrs). RESULTS:  For all three PFAAs monitored during phlebotomy, HLapp in each of the family members (except the mother, who had a low rate of venesection) was significantly shorter than the geometric mean HL measured in the reference population, and in some cases were even shorter compared to the fastest eliminator in the reference population. CONCLUSION:  This study suggests significantly accelerated PFAA clearance with regular phlebotomy treatment, but the small sample size and the lack of controls in this clinical intervention precludes drawing firm conclusions. Given the minimal risks of intermittent phlebotomy, this may be an effective and safe clinical intervention to diminish the body burden of PFAAs in highly exposed people.

Effects of phlebotomy-induced reduction of body iron stores on metabolic syndrome: results from a randomized clinical trial.
            (Houschyar et al., 2012) Download
BACKGROUND:  Metabolic syndrome (METS) is an increasingly prevalent but poorly understood clinical condition characterized by insulin resistance, glucose intolerance, dyslipidemia, hypertension, and obesity. Increased oxidative stress catalyzed by accumulation of iron in excess of physiologic requirements has been implicated in the pathogenesis of METS, but the relationships between cause and effect remain uncertain. We tested the hypothesis that phlebotomy-induced reduction of body iron stores would alter the clinical presentation of METS, using a randomized trial. METHODS:  In a randomized, controlled, single-blind clinical trial, 64 patients with METS were randomly assigned to iron reduction by phlebotomy (n = 33) or to a control group (n = 31), which was offered phlebotomy at the end of the study (waiting-list design). The iron-reduction patients had 300 ml of blood removed at entry and between 250 and 500 ml removed after 4 weeks, depending on ferritin levels at study entry. Primary outcomes were change in systolic blood pressure (SBP) and insulin sensitivity as measured by Homeostatic Model Assessment (HOMA) index after 6 weeks. Secondary outcomes included HbA1c, plasma glucose, blood lipids, and heart rate (HR). RESULTS:  SBP decreased from 148.5 ± 12.3 mmHg to 130.5 ± 11.8 mmHg in the phlebotomy group, and from 144.7 ± 14.4 mmHg to 143.8 ± 11.9 mmHg in the control group (difference -16.6 mmHg; 95% CI -20.7 to -12.5; P < 0.001). No significant effect on HOMA index was seen. With regard to secondary outcomes, blood glucose, HbA1c, low-density lipoprotein/high-density lipoprotein ratio, and HR were significantly decreased by phlebotomy. Changes in BP and HOMA index correlated with ferritin reduction. CONCLUSIONS:  In patients with METS, phlebotomy, with consecutive reduction of body iron stores, lowered BP and resulted in improvements in markers of cardiovascular risk and glycemic control. Blood donation may have beneficial effects for blood donors with METS. TRIAL REGISTRATION: NCT01328210 Please see related article:

A prospective analysis of blood donation history and risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
            (Ishii et al., 2016) Download
Blood donation may influence subsequent NHL development via temporary immune system alterations. To test the hypothesis that frequent blood donation is associated with an increased risk of NHL and its most common histologic subtypes, this study followed 36 576 men in the Health Professionals Follow-up Study (HPFS), who provided information on frequency of blood donation in the past 30 years in 1992. This study confirmed 544 incident cases of NHL through 2010. Cox proportional hazards regression was used to calculate hazards ratios (HR) and 95% CI for the risk of all NHL and major NHL histologic subtypes associated with number of blood donations. In this prospective study, there was no significant evidence of an association between blood donation frequency and incidence of NHL (age-adjusted HR = 1.26, 95% CI = 0.94-1.68, comparing > 20 donations vs 0 donations over 30 years, p for trend = 0.18) or of any major NHL subtypes.

Influence of blood donation on levels of water-soluble vitamins.
            (Kalus et al., 2008) Download
Iron depletion is a well-known side effect of blood donation. Research evidence also suggests an increasing prevalence of vitamin deficiency in apparently healthy subjects, but there is little information regarding the relationship between blood donation and vitamin status. A total of 217 volunteers (80 first-time and 137 repeat blood donors) were consecutively enrolled in the study. All subjects completed self-administered medical history and food intake forms, which included questions regarding alcohol consumption and smoking as well as on vitamin supplement, iron and contraceptive use (females). Vitamin B6, folic acid, vitamin B12 and biotin levels were measured using standard techniques. The mean vitamin levels of first-time and repeat blood donors did not significantly differ. Vitamin deficiencies occurred in both first-time and repeat blood donors but not on vitamin supplements. Vitamin status was affected by alcohol, nicotine and contraceptives. Blood donation does not decrease the level of water-soluble vitamins. Vitamin deficiencies occur in apparently healthy first-time as well as in repeat blood donors and can be prevented by vitamin supplementation.

Clinical applications of therapeutic phlebotomy.
            (Kim and Oh, 2016) Download
Phlebotomy is the removal of blood from the body, and therapeutic phlebotomy is the preferred treatment for blood disorders in which the removal of red blood cells or serum iron is the most efficient method for managing the symptoms and complications. Therapeutic phlebotomy is currently indicated for the treatment of hemochromatosis, polycythemia vera, porphyria cutanea tarda, sickle cell disease, and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease with hyperferritinemia. This review discusses therapeutic phlebotomy and the related disorders and also offers guidelines for establishing a therapeutic phlebotomy program.

Oral iron supplementation after blood donation: a randomized clinical trial.
            (Kiss et al., 2015) Download
IMPORTANCE:  Although blood donation is allowed every 8 weeks in the United States, recovery of hemoglobin to the currently accepted standard (12.5 g/dL) is frequently delayed, and some donors become anemic. OBJECTIVE:  To determine the effect of oral iron supplementation on hemoglobin recovery time (days to recovery of 80% of hemoglobin removed) and recovery of iron stores in iron-depleted ("low ferritin," ≤26 ng/mL) and iron-replete ("higher ferritin," >26 ng/mL) blood donors. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS:  Randomized, nonblinded clinical trial of blood donors stratified by ferritin level, sex, and age conducted in 4 regional blood centers in the United States in 2012. Included were 215 eligible participants aged 18 to 79 years who had not donated whole blood or red blood cells within 4 months. INTERVENTIONS:  One tablet of ferrous gluconate (37.5 mg of elemental iron) daily or no iron for 24 weeks (168 days) after donating a unit of whole blood (500 mL). MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES:  Time to recovery of 80% of the postdonation decrease in hemoglobin and recovery of ferritin level to baseline as a measure of iron stores. RESULTS:  The mean baseline hemoglobin levels were comparable in the iron and no-iron groups and declined from a mean (SD) of 13.4 (1.1) g/dL to 12.0 (1.2) g/dL after donation in the low-ferritin group and from 14.2 (1.1) g/dL to 12.9 (1.2) g/dL in the higher-ferritin group. Compared with participants who did not receive iron supplementation, those who received iron supplementation had shortened time to 80% hemoglobin recovery in both the low-ferritin (mean, 32 days, interquartile range [IQR], 30-34, vs 158 days, IQR, 126->168) and higher-ferritin groups (31 days, IQR, 29-33, vs 78 days, IQR, 66-95). Median time to recovery to baseline ferritin levels in the low-ferritin group taking iron was 21 days (IQR, 12-84). For participants not taking iron, recovery to baseline was longer than 168 days (IQR, 128->168). Median time to recovery to baseline in the higher-ferritin group taking iron was 107 days (IQR, 75-141), and for participants not taking iron, recovery to baseline was longer than 168 days (IQR, >168->168). Recovery of iron stores in all participants who received supplements took a median of 76 days (IQR, 20-126); for participants not taking iron, median recovery time was longer than 168 days (IQR, 147->168 days; P < .001). Without iron supplements, 67% of participants did not recover iron stores by 168 days. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE:  Among blood donors with normal hemoglobin levels, low-dose iron supplementation, compared with no supplementation, reduced time to 80% recovery of the postdonation decrease in hemoglobin concentration in donors with low ferritin (≤26 ng/mL) or higher ferritin (>26 ng/mL). TRIAL REGISTRATION: Identifier: NCT01555060.


Hepcidin level predicts hemoglobin concentration in individuals undergoing repeated phlebotomy.
            (Mast et al., 2013) Download
Dietary iron absorption is regulated by hepcidin, an iron regulatory protein produced by the liver. Hepcidin production is regulated by iron stores, erythropoiesis and inflammation, but its physiology when repeated blood loss occurs has not been characterized. Hepcidin was assayed in plasma samples obtained from 114 first-time/reactivated (no blood donations in preceding 2 years) female donors and 34 frequent (≥3 red blood cell donations in preceding 12 months) male donors as they were phlebotomized ≥4 times over 18-24 months. Hepcidin levels were compared to ferritin and hemoglobin levels using multivariable repeated measures regression models. Hepcidin, ferritin and hemoglobin levels declined with increasing frequency of donation in the first-time/reactivated females. Hepcidin and ferritin levels correlated well with each other (Spearman's correlation of 0.74), but on average hepcidin varied more between donations for a given donor relative to ferritin. In a multivariable repeated measures regression model the predicted inter-donation decline in hemoglobin varied as a function of hepcidin and ferritin; hemoglobin was 0.51 g/dL lower for subjects with low (>45.7 ng/mL) or decreasing hepcidin and low ferritin (>26 ng/mL), and was essentially zero for other subjects including those with high (>45.7 ng/mL) or increasing hepcidin and low ferritin (>26 ng/mL) levels (P<0.001). In conclusion, hepcidin levels change rapidly in response to dietary iron needed for erythropoiesis. The dynamic regulation of hepcidin in the presence of a low levels of ferritin suggests that plasma hepcidin concentration may provide clinically useful information about an individual's iron status (and hence capacity to tolerate repeated blood donations) beyond that of ferritin alone. identifier: NCT00097006.

Possible association of a reduction in cardiovascular events with blood donation.
            (Meyers et al., 1997) Download
BACKGROUND:  The iron hypothesis suggests that females are protected from atherosclerosis by having lower iron stores than men, thus limiting oxidation of lipids. OBJECTIVE:  To test the iron hypothesis by comparing cardiovascular event rates in whole blood donors compared with nondonors. DESIGN:  Prospective cohort with telephone survey follow up. SETTING:  The State of Nebraska, USA. PARTICIPANTS:  A sample was selected from the Nebraska Diet Heart Survey (NDHS) restricting for age > or = 40 years and absence of clinically apparent vascular diseases at time of enrollment in to NDHS (1985-87). MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:  The occurrence of cardiovascular events (myocardial infarction, angina, stroke), procedures (angioplasty, bypass surgery, claudication, endarterectomy), nitroglycerin use, or death (all cause mortality), and level of blood donation. RESULTS:  Participants were 655 blood donors and 3200 non-donors who differed in education, physical activity, diabetes, and frequency of antihypertensive treatment; 889 were lost to follow up. Sixty four donors and 567 non-donors reported cardiovascular events (crude odds ratio = 0.50, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.38-0.66). The benefit of donation was confined to non-smoking males (adjusted odds ratio 0.67, 95% CI 0.45-0.99). Benefit was limited to current donors (the most recent three years). No additional benefit resulted from donating more than once or twice over three years. CONCLUSION:  In support of the iron hypothesis, blood donation in non-smoking men in this cohort was associated with reduced risk of cardiovascular events. A randomised clinical trial is warranted to confirm these findings as the observed personal health benefit of donation has public policy ramifications.

A historical cohort study of the effect of lowering body iron through blood donation on incident cardiac events.
            (Meyers et al., 2002) Download
BACKGROUND:  Low body iron may protect against atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease through limiting oxidation of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol. Observational studies suggest that donation of whole blood might be associated with reduced risk of cardiovascular events. STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS:  In this retrospective cohort study, a total of 1508 adults who donated more than 1 unit of whole blood each year between 1988 and 1990 (frequent donors) and 1508 age- and sex-matched adults who donated only a single unit in that 3-year period (casual donors) were studied. A standardized questionnaire ascertained participant characteristics and occurrence of incident acute myocardial infarction, coronary angioplasty, coronary bypass surgery, and deaths between 1990 and 2000. Hospital records confirmed events. Cause of death was determined from death certificates. RESULTS:  A total of 643 subjects were lost, 113 declined, 156 were deceased but were included in the analysis, and 2104 were surveyed a median of 10 years after the index donation. Frequent donors weighed less and were less likely to be currently taking antihypertensive and lipid-modifying drugs. Events occurred in 6.3 percent of frequent and 10.5 percent of casual donors. After adjustment for group differences, the OR was D.60 (85% CIs 0.43, 0.83; p < 0.001). Events were less frequent in female donors than in male donors and less frequent in subjects who had donated before 1988 than in those who had not donated before 1988. CONCLUSION:  Frequent and long-term whole blood donation is associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular events.


Donation of blood is associated with reduced risk of myocardial infarction. The Kuopio Ischaemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study.
            (Salonen et al., 1998) Download
Because high body iron stores have been suggested as a risk factor for acute myocardial infarction, donation of blood could theoretically reduce the risk by lowering body iron stores. For this reason, the authors tested the hypothesis that voluntary blood donation is associated with reduced risk of acute myocardial infarction in a prospective epidemiologic follow-up study in men from eastern Finland. The subjects are all participants of the Kuopio Ischaemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study. A cohort of 2,862 men aged 42-60 years were followed for an average of almost 9 years. One man (0.7%) out of 153 men who had donated blood in 24 months preceding the baseline examination experienced an acute myocardial infarction during 1984 to 1995, whereas 316 men (12.5%) of 2,529 non-blood donors had an acute myocardial infarction (p < 0.0001 for difference between proportions). In a Cox proportional hazards model adjusting for age, examination years and all other predictive coronary disease risk factors, blood donors had a 88% reduced risk (relative hazard = 0.12, 95% confidence interval 0.02-0.86, p = 0.035) of acute myocardial infarction, compared with non-blood donors. These findings suggest that frequent blood loss through voluntary blood donations may be associated with a reduced risk of acute myocardial infarction in middle-aged men.

Cancer Incidence and Mortality in a Cohort of US Blood Donors: A 20-Year Study.
            (Vahidnia et al., 2013) Download
Blood donors are considered one of the healthiest populations. This study describes the epidemiology of cancer in a cohort of blood donors up to 20 years after blood donation. Records from donors who participated in the Retroviral Epidemiology Donor Study (REDS, 1991-2002) at Blood Centers of the Pacific (BCP), San Francisco, were linked to the California Cancer Registry (CCR, 1991-2010). Standardized incidence ratios (SIR) were estimated using standard US 2000 population, and survival analysis used to compare all-cause mortality among donors and a random sample of nondonors with cancer from CCR. Of 55,158 eligible allogeneic blood donors followed-up for 863,902 person-years, 4,236 (7.7%) primary malignant cancers were diagnosed. SIR in donors was 1.59 (95% CI = 1.54,1.64). Donors had significantly lower mortality (adjusted HR = 0.70, 95% CI = 0.66-0.74) compared with nondonor cancer patients, except for respiratory system cancers (adjusted HR = 0.93, 95% CI = 0.82-1.05). Elevated cancer incidence among blood donors may reflect higher diagnosis rates due to health seeking behavior and cancer screening in donors. A "healthy donor effect" on mortality following cancer diagnosis was demonstrated. This population-based database and sample repository of blood donors with long-term monitoring of cancer incidence provides the opportunity for future analyses of genetic and other biomarkers of cancer.

Blood donation and colorectal cancer incidence and mortality in men.
            (Zhang et al., 2012) Download
BACKGROUND:  Although blood donations may reduce body iron stores, to date, prospective data on frequent blood donation and colorectal cancer risk are limited. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS:  We tested whether frequent blood donation is associated with a lower risk of colorectal cancer in the Health Professionals Follow-up Study. We prospectively followed 35,121 men who provide the information on lifetime number of blood donations in 1992 through 2008. Serum ferritin levels were measured in a random sample of 305 men. Cox proportional hazard regression models were used to calculate the multivariable relative risks (RRs, 95%CIs) after adjusting for age and other established colorectal cancer risk factors. We documented 684 incident colorectal cancer cases and 224 deaths from colorectal cancer. The mean serum ferritin levels varied from 178 µg/L for men who did not donate blood to 98 µg/L for men who had at least 30 donations. Age-adjusted results for both incidence and mortality were essentially the same as the multivariable-adjusted results. Comparing with non-donors, the multivariable RRs (95%CIs) for colorectal cancer incidence were 0.92 (0.77, 1.11) for 1-5 donation, 0.85 (0.64, 1.11) for 6-9 donations, 0.96 (0.73, 1.26) for 10-19 donations, 0.91 (0.63, 1.32) for 20-29 donations, and 0.97 (0.68, 1.38) for at least 30 donations (P(trend) = 0.92). The multivariable RRs for colorectal cancer mortality were 0.99 (0.72, 1.36) for 1-5 donation, 0.93 (0.57, 1.51) for 6-9 donations, 0.85 (0.50, 1.42) for 10-19 donations, and 1.14 (0.72, 1.83) for at least 20 donations (P(trend) = 0.82). The results did not vary by cancer sub-sites, intake levels of total iron, heme iron, or family history of colorectal cancer. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE:  Frequent blood donations were not associated with colorectal cancer incidence and mortality in men. Our results do not support an important role of body iron stores in colorectal carcinogenesis.



Cable, RG, et al. (2011), ‘Iron deficiency in blood donors: analysis of enrollment data from the REDS-II Donor Iron Status Evaluation (RISE) study.’, Transfusion, 51 (3), 511-22. PubMed: 20804527
Dwyer, BE, et al. (2009), ‘Getting the iron out: phlebotomy for Alzheimer’s disease’, Med Hypotheses, 72 (5), 504-9. PubMed: 19195795
Edgren, G, et al. (2008), ‘Donation frequency, iron loss, and risk of cancer among blood donors.’, J Natl Cancer Inst, 100 (8), 572-79. PubMed: 18398098
Fernández-Real, JM, A López-Bermejo, and W Ricart (2005), ‘Iron stores, blood donation, and insulin sensitivity and secretion.’, Clin Chem, 51 (7), 1201-5. PubMed: 15976100
Genuis, SJ, et al. (2014), ‘Phlebotomy treatment for elimination of perfluoroalkyl acids in a highly exposed family: a retrospective case-series.’, PLoS One, 9 (12), e114295. PubMed: 25504057
Houschyar, KS, et al. (2012), ‘Effects of phlebotomy-induced reduction of body iron stores on metabolic syndrome: results from a randomized clinical trial.’, BMC Med, 10 54. PubMed: 22647517
Ishii, K, et al. (2016), ‘A prospective analysis of blood donation history and risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma.’, Leuk Lymphoma, 57 (6), 1423-28. PubMed: 26373836
Kalus, U, et al. (2008), ‘Influence of blood donation on levels of water-soluble vitamins.’, Transfus Med, 18 (6), 360-65. PubMed: 19140819
Kim, KH and KY Oh (2016), ‘Clinical applications of therapeutic phlebotomy.’, J Blood Med, 7 139-44. PubMed: 27486346
Kiss, JE, et al. (2015), ‘Oral iron supplementation after blood donation: a randomized clinical trial.’, JAMA, 313 (6), 575-83. PubMed: 25668261
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Meyers, DG, et al. (1997), ‘Possible association of a reduction in cardiovascular events with blood donation.’, Heart, 78 (2), 188-93. PubMed: 9326996
Meyers, DG, KC Jensen, and JE Menitove (2002), ‘A historical cohort study of the effect of lowering body iron through blood donation on incident cardiac events.’, Transfusion, 42 (9), 1135-39. PubMed: 12430669
Salonen, JT, et al. (1998), ‘Donation of blood is associated with reduced risk of myocardial infarction. The Kuopio Ischaemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study.’, Am J Epidemiol, 148 (5), 445-51. PubMed: 9737556
Vahidnia, F, et al. (2013), ‘Cancer Incidence and Mortality in a Cohort of US Blood Donors: A 20-Year Study.’, J Cancer Epidemiol, 2013 814842. PubMed: 24489545
Zhang, X, et al. (2012), ‘Blood donation and colorectal cancer incidence and mortality in men.’, PLoS One, 7 (6), e39319. PubMed: 22761761