I donated plasma for the first time last week. It hurt! Of course, the needle going in was painful, and the phlebotomist initially put the cuff on my arm too tight, resulting in my arm going numb. But pumping my hand like they asked resulted in an aching pain and I could not move my arm at all or even twitch it or tense it without feeling a cramp-like pain. I felt kind of a malaise through most of the process. My arm ached for hours afterward. When I took off the bandage later that evening, I only had a tiny hole and no bleeding, and today there is only a tiny bruise.
Upon speaking with my experienced donor SO afterward, I was told that it should not have hurt or ached whatsoever and that the person who poked me was a noob--she screwed up both of my SO's arms one time, and he requested not to have her, but failed to warn me. He said she must have pushed the needle in too far, but wouldn't I have a huge bruise if that were true?
I don't have any basis of comparison. I'm not scared of needles. Did I just have a bad phlebotomist? Should plasma donation have hurt so bad? Or am I just a big wuss? Any suggestions for having it not hurt so much in the future? Anecdotes?
Also, is this safe? I searched plasma donation on Google and came across a few sites like this
, so now I'm getting a vibe like these places exist to exploit the poor for their plasma and to employ inexperienced, needle-wielding nurses-in-training. Have I missed some big legal issue in the news regarding plasma donation?