ANTONIA REEVE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ANTONIA REEVE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Mechanical blood separation. Nurse adjusting an apheresis machine. Apheresis is the removal of blood from a donor and its return after removing the required components of the blood. The machine separates the blood into its components by rapid spinning in a centrifuge (lower centre). Cellular components compact at the bottom and the liquid plasma stays on top. The plasma and the platelets and white blood cells may be removed and the red blood cells are returned to the donor. This method allows greater collection of the blood parts than in normal processing. The donated blood parts are used to treat blood disorders. Apheresis itself is also used to directly treat some blood disorders.
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