Platelets are tiny cells in your blood which form clots to help stop bleeding. Cancer and some cancer treatments can affect the bone marrow where platelets are made. When this happens, the number of platelets in the blood becomes lower. This can increase your risk of bleeding and cause nosebleeds, bruising, heavier periods, bleeding gums or more serious problems.
If the number of platelets (your platelet count) is too low, doctors may recommend a platelet transfusion. If you consent, you will be given platelets collected from donors. The platelets are run through a drip and into your bloodstream. The transfusion usually takes 15-30 minutes and can usually be done at an outpatient clinic.
Severe side effects are rare, and all donated platelets are tested for infections or viruses. If you have any questions or concerns, talk to your doctor or nurse.