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Blood donations make a difference for patients like Alex.
January 27, 2020

alex_salazar_patientAlex is an 8-year-old boy with a passion for baseball. He has always been athletic, so his parents were surprised when he began bruising and complaining of pain in early September 2019. 

“We noticed he was really tired, and he had a lot of bruising on his legs,” said David Salazar, Alex’s father. “We thought it came from him playing football.” 

A week after his symptoms began, Alex was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia, an aggressive blood cancer. He left Laredo to begin treatment in San Antonio. 

Because his leukemia is particularly aggressive, his parents were told Alex would need a marrow transplant as soon as possible. 

January 20, 2020
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Flu activity in Texas is the highest it has been in a decade, according to a recent flu surveillance report from the Texas Department of State Health Services.

Texas is one of 33 states with high or record-high activity.

The flu virus is detected year-round in this country, but the number of cases tends to rise beginning in the fall, peaks between December and February, and can last until May.

That’s why the South Texas Blood & Tissue Center encourages South Texans to get a flu shot, which helps maintain an adequate blood supply. Anyone who has flu symptoms on the day of donation can’t give blood.

Because of generous blood donors like Ron, we are able to make a difference in our community
January 13, 2020

Ron White donated blood for the first time at 17, and his donations have been saving lives ever since.

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Ron donated blood to fellow injured soldiers when he served in the Vietnam War.

After the war, he began donating platelets when asked to donate on behalf of his coworker’s ill sister.

In between, Ron continued donating while he accomplished another milestone—a career as a professional bowler. He recorded 28 perfect games and even owned a bowling alley.

Eventually, Ron considered taking a break from donating. Then he met River Laurence, a 5-year-old boy with a rare form of cancer.

“Our church held a lot of blood drives for him,” said Ron. “He passed two weeks after his fifth birthday. He was the bravest kid I have ever met.”

Because of generous blood donors, Jaxson was able to fight cancer.
January 6, 2020

jaxson_patient_nbdmFor seven days, 2-year-old Jaxson was pale with fever, swelling to his left temple and redness and protrusion of his left eye.

“After visiting five doctors in seven days with two trips to the ER, Jaxson’s pediatrician decided to send him back to the hospital for lab work and a CT of his head at our request,” said Juan Martinez, Jaxson’s father.

Within an hour, the family received the call no parent ever wants to get. “The results are back, and the doctor wants to speak to both of us immediately.” The labs showed a low red blood cell count and low platelets, and the scan showed Jaxson had a tumor the size of a ping pong ball causing the swelling to his left temple and the symptoms.

December 23, 2019
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More than 60% of people in the United States can give blood, yet less than 5% of them make at least one donation a year, according to a new study.

The report in the journal Transfusion revisited research done in 2007 into the number of eligible donors, and the main finding was an increased number of potential donors. That older report showed a statistic frequently used by blood centers: approximately 40% of the population is eligible to give blood, but 10% of those who were eligible actually donate.

“It’s heartening to see that the total pool of eligible blood donors has increased,” said Dr. Rachel Beddard, Chief Medical Officer of BioBridge Global. “The fact that the percent of eligible donors that actually give is lower means we need to find innovative ways to reach out to donors and engage them to donate.”

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