The basic eligibility guidelines state that you must be at least 16 years old with parental consent in some states or 17 years old without consent in most states, weigh at least 110 pounds and not have donated in the past 56 days.
So, if you have smoked or ingested non-synthetic marijuana, are otherwise in good health and meet the basic donation guidelines, you can donate.
Want to make sure you get a safe form of marijuana when purchasing it? Here are 25 things you should know before buying it.
There is one final stipulation to note. While it is OK to have medical or recreational cannabis in your system, if you are under the influence of the drug at the time of donation, you will be deferred. That rule goes for licit and illicit drugs and alcohol.
Here is what the American Red Cross said when we asked about cannabis use and donating blood: Yes, you can donate if you’ve smoked marijuana. However, you cannot donate if you’ve smoked or ingested a synthetic form of the drug.
There is an FDA-approved medication called Marinol that has man-made THC in it. If you are taking Marinol for a medical condition, such as nausea from chemotherapy or loss of appetite from HIV infection, you would not be eligible for blood donation. If you have taken Marinol and do not have a pre-existing medical condition, you would not be deferred, as it is FDA-approved.
Synthetic marijuana — also known as K2 or Spice — is a human-made chemical with a similar make-up to the marijuana plant. It is classified under the group called new psychoactive substances (NPS) and is considered to be an unregulated, mind-altering substance.
In July 2019, the American Red Cross reported an emergency need: Blood donations were going out to hospitals faster than they were coming into donation centers.
While blood donation centers are no longer in a state of emergency, there is still a critical need. Every two seconds, someone in the United States needs blood, yet only 10% of the eligible population — which is less than 38% of Americans — donates.
Yes, but you cannot donate if you’ve smoked or ingested a synthetic form of the drug.
There are many reasons why someone could need a blood transfusion, such as:
In the United States, possible disqualifiers can include, but aren’t limited to:
Smoking cigarettes in and of itself doesn’t disqualify you from donating blood.
Using certain medications may temporarily disqualify you from donating blood. They include:
- acitretin, a drug used for severe psoriasis
- blood thinners, such as warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven) and heparin
- dutasteride (Avodart, Jalyn), which is used for enlarged prostate
- isotretinoin (Amnesteem, Claravis), an acne drug
- teriflunomide (Aubagio), which is used to treat multiple sclerosis (MS)
- a severe accident or injury
- diseases or conditions such as anemia and hemophilia
You may not be eligible to donate if you’ve spent an extended amount of time in places where variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD) is found, such as many countries in Europe. vCJD is a rare condition more commonly known as “mad cow disease.”
Smoking before your appointment can lead to an increase in blood pressure. This may disqualify you from donating. Smoking afterward may lead to dizziness.
When you donate blood, you’ll need to answer some questions about your health, lifestyle, and travel history to determine your eligibility.
There are certain stimulants and drugs that can disqualify you from giving blood, but can you donate blood if you smoke? In many cases, the answer is yes. Learn more about the factors that determine whether you’re eligible to give blood. We'll tell you what you can do and how you can be a donor, even if you do smoke.