In 1951, James Harrison underwent extensive chest surgery at the age of 14. He was hospitalized for three months after surgeons removed one of his lungs. This man knew he was alive due of the blood transfusions he had gotten during this trying period, so the Australian decided to repay the favor. Harrison, on the other hand, had no notion that his golden arm would save the lives of millions of children!
Harrison makes the decision to return the favor.
Harrison vowed to become a blood donor after the procedure. The youngster had to wait another four years since outdated Australian regulations required blood donors to be at least 18 years old. Harrison, on the other hand, maintained his word.
After that, Harrison began donating blood to the Australian Red Cross on a regular basis. For the last 60 years, Harrison has been a consistent giver, and the group believes that he has saved millions of lives.
Doctors claimed Harrison’s blood may address a deadly disease soon after he became a donor. “In Australia, up until approximately 1967, there were literally hundreds of newborns dying each year, physicians didn’t know why, and it was dreadful,” said Jemma Falkenmire of the Australian Red Cross Blood Service.
“Women were miscarrying in large numbers, and kids were being delivered with neurological damage.” We now know that Rhesus Disease, commonly known as Fetal Erythroblastosis, was the cause of these tragic tragedies. This is a disorder in which a pregnant woman’s blood begins to destroy the fetus’ blood cells.
When a pregnant woman has negative RhD blood and the baby in her uterus has positive RhD blood inherited from the father, the illness arises. As a result, the mother can develop antibodies that attack the “foreign” blood cells in the newborn.
Doctors found Harrison has an unusual antibody in his blood, and they collaborated intensively in the 1960s to produce Anti-D, an injection. Anti-D inhibits RhD antibodies from forming in RhD-negative women during pregnancy.
Doctors are baffled as to why Harrison has such an uncommon blood type. His best hypothesis is that it has to do with the blood transfusions he underwent when he was 14 years old. According to the blood service, there are only about 50 persons in Australia who carry these antibodies.
“Every bag of blood is important,” Falkenmire stated, “but James’ blood is exceptionally remarkable… James’ blood has been used in every batch of Anti-D produced in Australia.”
“And with over 17% of Australian women at danger, James has aided in the saving of many lives.” “To be precise, 2.4 million.”
James Harrison, dubbed “The Man with the Golden Arm,” donated 1,173 units of blood plasma, 1,163 of the right arm and 10 of the left. “It’s something I’m capable of.” “Being a blood donor is one of my abilities, if not my sole ability,” the humble guy explains.
“They invited me to be a guinea pig, and I’ve been giving away ever since,” the herp explained, “and I’d continue if they allowed me.”
Mr. Harrison has unfortunately reached the age restriction for being a donor, and the Blood Service want to preserve his health. In 1999, he received the Australian Order Medal for saving the lives of millions of newborns after making his final gift.