Q: Being a plumber I cannot help but think of the heart and cardiovascular system as a pump attached to a lot of pipes. Could you lower your B.P. simply by donating or removing blood from the system on a regular
basis or would the body regenerate new blood much too quickly for any benefit?
A: Donating blood does not work to treat high blood pressure. The decrease in blood pressure from blood loss is temporary. Your body rapidly compensates for the loss and blood pressure goes back up. This is similar to the drop in water pressure in a house when all the faucets are running. Once the faucets are shut off, water pressure goes back up. Although donating blood does not work to treat high blood pressure, studies have shown that routine blood donation lowers the risk of heart attacks in men. Giving blood lowers the amount of iron in the body which is felt to be beneficial.