Personal Injury Lawyers Appreciate The Gift that Keeps on Giving

A great way to extend the holiday spirit of giving to something we all can't live without is to donate blood. Every donated pint of blood can help save the lives of three people. Equally as important, although not as well known, is the fact that not only are you giving others this life-sustaining gift, you also are doing your own body some good. January is National Blood Donor Month.

The personal injury attorneys at Injury Lawyers of Illinois want to remind you that every two seconds someone in the United States needs donated blood for surgeries, cancer treatment, treating chronic illnesses such as Sickle Cell Anemia, car accidents and other traumatic injuries. They know that the period when the need is greatest — summer and winter holiday periods — is when blood donations plunge. While the need for donated blood is great, only 10 percent of people eligible to donate blood do so.

Accident Victims, Chronically ill and Cancer Patients Have the Greatest Need

Seriously injured people who have suffered substantial blood loss in a car accident can require 50 pints or more of red blood cells. Traumatic personal injury victims whose injuries are the result of another's negligence frequently are in need of blood transfusions. A cancer patient undergoing chemotherapy may need daily blood transfusions; during treatment, severe burn victims may need as much as 20 units of platelets.

Each donated pint of blood can be divided into a number of components: red blood cells, plasma, white blood cells, and cryoprecipitate. Plasma is the component with the longest useful life: it can be frozen and used for up to a year. Red blood cells transport oxygen to bodily organs and tissues. White blood cells are the body's infection fighters. Platelet is the component that helps blood clot. And cryoprecipitate, which is derived from plasma, helps control bleeding and is used for patients requiring massive transfusions of a large number of blood components at one time.

We mentioned earlier in this article that donating blood benefits the donor, too. According to an article by, here's how:

First, the regular donation of blood is good for heart health. It helps to reduce how sticky and thick your blood is, thus making it easier to flow through blood vessels and reach the heart.

Second, regular blood donation reduces the amount of iron in the blood. Iron, a mineral found in blood, is believed to increase free-radical damage to cells in the body. A 2008 study found that donating helps deplete iron stores in the blood, thereby reducing your overall cancer risk.

Third, good health is its own blessing, one that in a mere 45 minutes can be shared with others in need. If your blood type is O negative, your blood donation has an even greater impact as it is the universal donor type. Patients of all blood types can receive type O negative red blood cells; as such, it is in highest demand and often in short supply because only 7 percent of US residents are type O negative.

We, the personal injury attorneys at Injury Lawyers of Illinois, have represented myriad car accident victims, many of whom have required blood transfusions as part of their treatment. We encourage you to consider starting a new tradition of donating blood. If you're at least 17 years old, weigh at least 110 pounds, and are in good health, you can donate blood every 56 days. You may never need a blood transfusion. But it's reassuring to know that if you ever did, somewhere in the US, someone had made a deposit into the nation's blood bank that you can withdraw at no cost, one that could just save your life.

If you have been injured in an accident, let the Skokie personal injury attorneys at Injury Lawyers of Illinois help you on the road to recovery. For a free consultation and evaluation of your case, call us at 847-982-3615 or visit us at