Photo by Danny Owens

Learn | 11.13.2023

Can You Donate Blood If You Use Cannabis?

Find out what's eligible and what's not when donating blood.

A few factors could disqualify you from giving blood, but is cannabis use one of them? During this process, you’ll usually be asked certain questions like if you’ve traveled recently, your state of health, and your overall lifestyle choices. Keep reading to see if you’re eligible to donate. 

Can Cannabis Users Donate Blood?

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The simple answer is yes; cannabis users, even daily users with extreme exposure to THC, are eligible to donate blood. In fact, the American Red Cross has an entire page dedicated to answering your questions about donating blood and cannabis use.

According to the American Red Cross, “The use of cannabis does not disqualify an individual from blood donation, but potential donors cannot give if their use of cannabis impairs their memory or comprehension.”

Similarly, it notes, “There is no data that specifies how long an individual should wait between cannabis use and blood donation,” but the foundation stresses that you will not be eligible to donate blood if cannabis use impacts memory and comprehension.

Finally, blood banks will not test for THC levels, and the individual who receives your blood will not be at risk of failing a drug test due to THC’s presence in your body at the time of donation.

What Isn't Eligible?

Photo by Maresa Smith

Although THC will not keep you from donating blood, there are plenty of factors that will. The following are a few general disqualifiers from blood donation;

  • Any illnesses, even the common flu, the day of or days before you plan to donate
  • Pregnancy or giving birth within the past six weeks
  • Getting a piercing or tattoo within the last year
  • Injection drugs that are not prescribed, like heroin, steroids, etc.
  • Organ transplants or blood transfusions within the last year
  • A pre-existing blood clotting disorder
  • The Ebola virus
  • Other diseases like HIV and hepatitis B or C
  • Blood cancers like lymphoma, leukemia, etc.
  • High blood pressure at the time of donation
  • Heart attack or stroke within the last six months
  • Active heart and lung conditions

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