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Call for gay men to donate blood stem cells

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Reader comments

  1. I just tried the registration and it is almost impossible to get in I have an allergic reaction to latex plasters and it means I can’t donate. Its a shame because I’ve always wanted to donate blood etc and it really annoys me that as a gay man I can’t

    1. Anthony Nolan 24 Aug 2011, 2:05pm

      If it’s a latex sensitivity as opposed to an allergy then you would be eligible. If you have any questions please email and a member of the donor support team will be able to help.

    2. Scott Robertson 8 Sep 2011, 2:27pm

      I understand your frustration but try to remember that, as a gay man, the organisation would be happy to accept your blood. It’s been rejected, however, on the grounds of your allergy. Totally different.

  2. Not that I wouldn’t do it because of this but how is that first process not lengthy? Coming in each day for days for a ‘series’ of shots and then sit down for 5 hours on the day they actually do the procedure. Also if you’re holed up for a week and a half you must be going through some sort of pain.They should have written something like ‘we know it takes time but we urge you to do it anyway’.

    1. Anthony Nolan 24 Aug 2011, 2:10pm

      A nurse will come to you to give the injections, but you’d need to be available to come to London for a medical and to donate. There is a donation video diary on our website if you’d like to see the process:

  3. Andrew Woodman 24 Aug 2011, 1:46pm

    I think it’s a really good idea and tried to register but was stopped by the age restriction 16-40.

  4. Me too, Andrew, am over 40. I wonder if the screening for single heterosexual males is the same in terms of “risky” behaviour?

    1. Anthony Nolan 24 Aug 2011, 2:14pm

      It’s the same for everyone who wants to join the register – we don’t discriminate based on gender or sexuality.

  5. duffers8503 24 Aug 2011, 2:44pm

    On the application form one of the first questions is
    “Are you are involved in high risk sexual practices that may increase your exposure to sexual diseases?”
    Does gay sex classify as “high risk” or would you have to be a prostitute or something? Because if you were wanting to give blood for example, as mentioned in this article, having sex with other men is classed as high risk, would put you in this catogory and you wouldn’t be allowed to donate.

    1. duffers8503 24 Aug 2011, 2:56pm

      Sorry, Does gay sex classify as “high risk” should have read I assume gay sex doesn’t classify as “high risk”

  6. I’m ashamed that after reading about that process it made me feel physically uncomfortable and ill
    I feel bad about that but when i’m gone all my organs are up for donations anyway.

  7. duffers8503, I would have thought that heterosexuals engaging in uprotected sex is high risk too, not just anal among some gay people. Straights also engage in the latter as well as the former without protection. So I would assume that Anthony Nolan construes unprotected penile/vaginal sex is also high risk.

    1. duffers8503 24 Aug 2011, 4:55pm

      Yes, exactly. Like and idiot, I thought that after I had posted…

  8. “In this case, a needle is used to extract bone marrow directly from the pelvis. Those donating through this method may need up to a week and a half off work, although most people return to work sooner.”

    I had bone marrow extracted with a needle, and I anticipated so much pain.

    When the actual extraction took place, it was over before I knew it had begun, and it did not prevent me from continuing my normal routine.

    This is tremendous news.

  9. Well, sorry I’m not a young /male/, but…signing up anyway :) I lost my mum to Multiple Myeloma, but she did benefit from a stem cell transplant for a while, and one of her cancer buddies went successfully into remission after a transplant. I wouldn’t think twice about the hassle of injections and a possible surgical procedure and recovery to donate, if it might I might give someone else’s mum their life back!

    1. yea… regardless of age, we should sign up…

  10. Ill keep my bits if its all the same, and its mine and you aint having it.

    1. Noone is forcing you to they are just asking people to donate something they don’t need to save the life of a person.

  11. I’d encourage all young men to join up – you could potentially save someone’s life. Having lost someone to cancer I think anyone who is eligible should visit their website –

  12. Court, I hear you. I lost my mother to breast cancer ten years ago but I’m over 40 so I’m excluded. I would love to donate. It pains me to know I can’t.

  13. Some homosexual men don’t approve of stem cell donation on moral grounds? Some obviously do. Whose morals are correct in this case?

    1. Jock S. Trap 25 Aug 2011, 8:25am

      Duh… Your not very bright are you?!

    2. Keith, are you one of these homosexual men how do not approve of stem cells?

      1. You are well aware of my disgust for the sexual practices of the gay brigade. You do appear to regard labelling me as a closet homosexual an insult. That says much about your view of closet homosexuality.
        As regards stem cells, I am opposed. What is the humanist (your) view on stemm cell donation?

    3. Typo
      Keith, are you one of these homosexual men who do not approve of stem cells?

    4. Keith is a poor closet homosexual with religious issues.

  14. Well done to A Nolan

  15. All done. I just hope this doesn’t work like Monty Python. Then again if John Cleese turned up on my doorstep with a saw, asking for my stem cells, I’d at least laugh before he hacked me to bits.

  16. Gay men in Slovenia are not allowed to donate blood stem cells or blood in general.

  17. I think that raising awareness of this issue is a great thing, and kudos to Anthony Nolan. However, I have to admit, I checked out their website a couple of years ago, intending to join, but found the fact that I would have to travel to London when called upon to donate was just a little bit too much. I live in Yorkshire, it’s not a quick trip. It’s an even longer trip for many others. I’m all too happy to donate bone marrow/blood stem cells, but I was afraid that I would be of little use to anyone if I couldn’t make the trips. I joined the British Bone Marrow Register, the NHS scheme; although the health checks/course of injections etc before donation is exactly the same as Anthony Nolan, it does not require you to travel to London, only the nearest hospital. Sorry A.N. I just thought I’d volunteer this info for anyone who is interested, but unable to fulfill A.N’s travel requirements.

  18. Don’t live for others, anymore than you would expect others to live for you.

  19. @JohnK
    As regards stem cells, I am opposed. What is the humanist (your) view on stemm cell donation?

    1. It appears the humanist has no view.

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