Srinagar: Doctors involved in plasma therapy of Covid-19 patients at SKIMS Soura on Friday said that the blood component could be a safe option without adverse side effects for severely affected patients, some of whom have already shown signs of recovery following the transfusion.
SKIMS started plasma therapy on Covid-19 patients on a trial basis last month. Doctors and the SKIMS administration described the outcomes of convalescent plasma transfusion (CPT) as encouraging.
“It’s too early to say about the recovery rate in patients transfused with plasma but the improvement in some patients is encouraging,” said an administrator.
Some patients who received the therapy have been discharged also, he said.
“We are only concerned about the poor response from donors,” the official rued.
Dr Rumana Makdhoomi, Head of Department of Blood Transfusion and Immunohematology, told Kashmir Reader that so far 13 persons have donated plasma after recovering from Covid-19.
“Although it’s less than expected, we are sure that more people will come forward to donate plasma in coming days,” she said.
Most of the donors, Dr Rumana said, were doctors and paramedics, while common people were showing reluctance.
“People who come in the category of donors as per the guidelines should come. The therapy is safe and effective,” she said.
The premier institute has issued an appeal asking recovered Covid-19 patients to donate plasma for severe or life-threatening patients.
The apex committee on Covid-19 in J&K also recommended plasma therapy as an ‘off label’ treatment for terminally sick Covid-19 patients.
In its treatment guidelines, the committee said the plasma therapy is an ‘Off Label’ but effective treatment to cure critically-ill Covid-19 patients but it should only be done as a trial, and with all requisite approvals from government and ethical committees of respective hospitals — and not as a regular line of treatment.
“The therapy involves transfusion of antibody-rich plasma, a component of blood, from recovered patients of Covid-19, into those who are critically ill with the disease,” reads the official memo.
SKIMS has issued helpline numbers also for plasma donors.
They can Call/WhatsApp on 9419415196, 9622457636, 9419415342, 9797095342, 9419081223.
It said the donor will be registered for Plasma Donation, a doctor from SKIMS will call him/her and check their suitability.
“The appointment for plasma donation will be booked if donors are found to be suitable,” said an official.
He said the donor can come to the hospital by their own vehicle or SKIMS can arrange transport facility.
“The procedure of donating plasma is 45 minutes to one hour. Donor will be given a certificate of appreciation,” the official added.
Who can donate plasma
Those who have had Coronavirus and recovered at least 14 days ago.
Age Criteria: Between the ages of 18 and 60
Weight Criteria: Over 50 kgs
Who cannot donate
If you have recovered from coronavirus within the last 14 days.
Women who have been pregnant even once.
People with diabetes and those who take insulin shots.
People suffering from hypertension that is uncontrolled.
People with chronic kidney, heart, lung, liver diseases or any other immunocompromised states.