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Red Gold - the epic story of blood Blood Journey: Phase 6: The Results
Blood Journey Blood History Blood Basics Innovators and Pioneers Education Ask the Experts
Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3 Phase 4 Phase 5 Phase 6

Man's face
As always, blood continues to flow through our lives.
Blood transfusions have come a long way. The first transfusion, in the 17th century, attempted to heal a man with the blood of a calf. Since then, human-to-human transfusion efforts were often marred by incompatible blood types, problematic clotting, the inefficacy of relying on direct transfusions, and other stumbling blocks. In time, dedicated physicians, researchers, and administrators overcame these challenges, and blood is safer than ever.

Blood cells Article:

The Patients ... and the Future
After transfusion, the cycle continues.
Only through the dedication of healthy, volunteer blood donors can we maintain an adequate and safest-possible supply.

On this journey we have come a long way, too. We began at the microscopic level, within the bone marrow; we followed blood flowing through the body, delivering oxygen where it is needed; leaving the body, by way of a needle, directly into a bag; from storage facilities to a hospital; and, eventually, back into another body -- a body desperate for more blood.

We hope you have enjoyed your journey. The final stage is the blood quiz, an informal assessment of how much you have learned. The answers to each of the questions can be found within the RED GOLD Web site. Enjoy!

Quiz - Test Your Blood I.Q.
Blood in test tubes

Drawing of nun treating patient

Then:Prior to 1910, bleeding to death was not uncommon, especially during childbirth, surgery, and among hemophiliacs.

Now:Millions of people receive blood transfusions annually in the U.S. alone.

Photos: Blood cells (detail), from RED GOLD: THE EPIC STORY OF BLOOD, courtesy of Dr. Christopher Ellis; and nun bleeding man with leeches, courtesy of the National Library of Medicine.

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