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Blood Donation Centers:

American Red Cross:
"Lyme disease - If this is a chronic condition you cannot donate. If you were treated with antibiotics and completely recovered, you can donate 12 months after the last dose of antiobiotics was taken." "Those who have had infections with Chagas Disease or Babesiosis are not eligible to donate." [LYMEINFO NOTE 2009: Their new website no longer contains the first part of this statement.]
UCSF Blood Center
"Permanent Deferrals - The following conditions would permanently disqualify an individual as an allogenic or designated blood donor...Brucellosis/Babesiosis...Lyme Disease" [LYMEINFO NOTE 2009: Their new website no longer contains this statement.]
NY Blood Center (pdf file)
"Lyme Disease - 1)If no signs of symptoms: Defer until treatment is completed. 2) If signs or symptoms: Defer for six months whether or not treatment was received".

Medical Literature:

Tick-Borne Disease Transmission by Blood Donation Prevalent in Endemic Areas
"In a study presented here at the Infectious Diseases Society of America 43rd annual meeting, Megan Nguyen, BS, from the American Red Cross in Rockville, Maryland, presented data from a six-year study that showed the prevalence of B microti transmission via blood transfusion in areas where the tick is commonly found."
Transfusion-transmitted tick-borne infections: a cornucopia of threats
"Despite the present unavailability of screening assays, some form of serologic and nucleic acid testing may be justified for the Babesia. Given that interactions between humans and ticks are likely to increase in the future, vigilance is required as new and extant tick-borne agents pose potential threats to transfusion safety."
Risk and prevention of transfusion-transmitted babesiosis and other tick-borne diseases.
"The risk of transfusion-transmitted babesiosis is higher than usually appreciated and in endemic areas represents a major threat to the blood supply."
Tick-borne diseases in transfusion medicine
"The transmission of tick-borne pathogens via blood transfusion is of global concern."
CDC- Blood Safety and Tick-Borne Illnesses
"At least 21 reported cases of babesiosis, mostly caused by Babesia microti but also by the more recently recognized WA1-type Babesia parasite, have been transmitted by transfusion of blood from asymptomatic infected blood donors."
Transfer of Borrelia burgdorferi s.s. infection via blood transfusion in a murine model.
"Our results indicate that it is possible to acquire B. burgdoferi infection via transfused blood in a mouse model of Lyme borreliosis."
Emerging infectious diseases that threaten the blood supply.
"Many agents have fulfilled the broad definition of emerging blood-transmitted infections, including West Nile virus (WNV), Trypanosoma cruzi, Plasmodium spp., Babesia spp., parvovirus B19, dengue virus, and the prions that cause variant Creutzfeld-Jacob disease (vCJD). Other agents such as human herpes virus-8 (HHV-8-Kaposi's sarcoma virus) and Borellia (Lyme disease) and, perhaps, avian flu virus, are known to have a viremic phase, but have not yet been proved to be transfusion-transmitted."
Transfusion-Associated Babesiosis after Heart Transplant
"Our experiences with this patient suggest that babesiosis should be considered in the differential diagnosis of transplant patients who have fever and hemolytic anemia."
Babesiosis acquired through blood transfusion, California, USA
"Babesiosis was reported in a California resident who received a transfusion of blood products collected in the disease-endemic northeastern region of the United States. Babesiosis should be considered year-round in the diagnosis of febrile and afebrile patients with abnormal blood cell counts who have received blood products from disease-endemic areas."
Babesiosis and blood transfusion: flying under the radar
"Despite the obvious public health issues posed by Babesia spp., options for preventing their transmission by blood transfusion remain limited. However, recognition that the Babesia spp. are indeed an ongoing and expanding blood safety threat will probably prove instrumental in the development of viable interventions to limit transmission of these agents."
Emergence of lyme arthritis after autologous chondrocyte transplantation
"The possibility of a dormant borrelial infection should be considered in patients who undergo repair of cartilage defects with autologous chondrocyte transplantation."
Survival of Borrelia burgdorferi in blood products
"The results of this study do not exclude the possibility of transmission of Lyme disease through blood transfusion."
Prevalence of Erythema migrans Borreliosis in blood donors
"Though further research is required to document a transfusion-transmitted Borrelia infection, infected persons should be treated to avoid serious or late manifestations."
Survival of Borrelia burgdorferi in human blood stored under blood banking conditions
"It is concluded that B. burgdorferi may survive storage under blood banking conditions and that transfusion-related Lyme disease is theoretically possible."
Borrelia burgdorferi: survival in experimentally infected human blood processed for transfusion
"However, the possibility of survival of B. burgdorferi under blood banking conditions warrants a heightened awareness of this potential problem."
Current concepts on the transmission of bacteria and parasites by blood components
"This review deals with the main bacterial (Syphilis, Lyme disease, Gram positive and Gram negative agents), parasite (Chagas disease, malaria, leishmaniasis, toxoplasmosis and babesiosis) and rickettsial diseases that are carried by blood products."
Babesiosis in a renal transplant recipient acquired through blood transfusion
"Transplant patients may contract babesiosis after tick exposure and/or via blood transfusion. The diagnosis of babesiosis may be confused with malaria and should be included in the differential diagnosis of posttransplant hemolytic-uremic syndrome in organ transplant patients."
Retrospective study of a borreliosis infected blood donor
"In a follow-up of 14 recipients of blood products donated by such a donor, no clinical signs or serologic evidence of a transfusion-transmitted borreliosis could be demonstrated."
Seroprevalence of Rickettsia spp. infection among tick-bitten patients and blood donors in Sweden.
"The study shows that infection with Rickettsia spp. as well as coinfection with Lyme borreliosis needs to be considered in the diagnosis of tick-transmitted infections in Sweden."
Prevalence of Borrelia burgdorferi antibodies in Hamburg blood donors
"Introduction of B. burgdorferi antibody screening is not regarded an effective means to prevent transfusion-transmitted Lyme disease."


Video: Blood supply may be source of Lyme infections
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