How You Can Survive With Only One-Third of Your Blood
100 Comments


Have you ever stopped to think that it’s possible
to lose a lot of blood — like a LOT — and not die? Or is that just me… am I weird…
Meh! Well, we can live with about ⅔ of our blood lost! It’s nuts. Let’s break it
down. On average — and this of course varies from
person to person based on height and weight — an adult human has somewhere between 1.2
to 1.5 gallons of blood circulating in their body at any given time. And even though we say “blood” like it’s
one thing, blood is actually made of four things.
Plasma is the liquid that carries salts, electrolytes, and blood cells around your body. Red blood
cells are the ones that carry oxygen, white blood cells fight infection, and platelets
help us stop bleeding when we get a cut. The interesting thing is that the parts that
make up blood don’t have the same lifespan. Plasma is replenished as we eat and drink.Red
blood cells last about four months, white blood cells turn over about every day, and
platelets last about ten days… and all those cells are made predominantly in the bone marrow
controlled by hormones. The takeaway here is that blood is always turning over. So say you donate a pint of blood, which is
the standard amount. This is actually about 10 percent of your blood! The plasma will
be replenished almost immediately, and the platelets and white blood cells pretty soon
after because the body makes those all the time. But it takes days for a stem cell in
the bone marrow to become a functional red blood cell, so it can take a few days or even
a week for your body to replenish all the components of blood taken for the donation. And with red blood cells taking the longest
to replenish while also having the vital function of carrying life-giving oxygen to all our
organs, it’s this cell count doctors look at when you lose blood. I talked to my dad,
Dr. Teitel, who is a haemotologist, about what happens. So how much blood can you lose before it becomes
fatal? Well, Dr. Dad says it depends on how much you lose, but also how FAST you
lose it. The important thing
is haemoglobin. Basically, says Dr. Dad, your body can adapt
to slow blood loss like it does to high altitude. So the same way you can’t go from sea level
to the top of Everest in one go, you can’t drastically change your blood volume and survive. So it gets messy, literally, but at the end
of the day our bodies are sort of like a thermostat when it comes to blood — they’re excellent
at keeping everything at the right level so we can go on living. Thanks, body! And speaking of adapting, sort of, snake venom
isn’t always bad right here. So what’s your favourite blood fact? Let us know in the comments,
be sure to like this video and subscribe for more Seeker

100 thoughts on “How You Can Survive With Only One-Third of Your Blood

  1. Hello everyone, I am in need of a little generosity, or just any help in general.

    https://www.gofundme.com/3p8x6ls

  2. I ended up in the hospital a few weeks ago and they said I lost quite a bit of my blood, that was fun. Making up assignments for college was even more fun. My Hgb went from 14.8 to 9 in a weeks time.

  3. I watched a kid accidentally cut his hand. The blade went into the side of his hand. When he pulled the blade out, it cut every single tendon and hit a major artery. And then, in an instant, he started shooting blood about 10 feet out. It was like a water sprinkler on pulse mode. Within 15 seconds, he covered the bathroom from head to toe with blood. Including myself. quickly grabbed paper towels and covered his wound. I took off my t-shirt and tied off his hand.
    Overall, It took him an hour to get to the hospital. He almost died. He had lost so much blood that the doctor said he should have died. He didnt even pass out! He had to have 7 surgeries to repair the damage and he still has limited movement in his hand.
    To this day, that was the scariest thing ive ever seen. I had nightmares for months.

  4. Okay Seeker, first the story on cannibalism and the caloric intake it provides, and now a story on the minimum amount of blood a human can survive on.
    What's going on, is there something you're trying to tell us?

  5. My body is super awful at keeping my blood where it belongs. I've got a very rare condition where my capillaries open up and let all the plasma and lighter fluids escape into the interstitial spaces in my body, all the while building up hemo-concentration in the circulation. I've just finished another stretch in the ICU. NOT FUN! Any thoughts Dr Dad? I can hook you up with some very good researchers at the NIH in Bethesda.

  6. Please keep this format, Seeker. It is the one we are all used to before, I think, Discovery made you give up the 'Dnews' name. I have been watching every single video that you post for 4 years now. You made me smarter and I am now an even bigger fun of science. Please keep all the amazing hosts and do not give up on making this amazing videos.

  7. I got about appox 3.34l of blood in the body while others in my class of same age got a higher bpm and around 5l+ of blood

  8. "According to Doctor Dad,…" 😂 😂 😂 😂 you're lucky to have a direct source of information when making episodes related to blood

  9. stupid question but interesting to think about nontheless: if you lost 100% of your blood instantly, as if it teleported away or something and then got it back exactly as it was when it left a few seconds later, would you die?/ what would happen otherwise?

  10. My favorite "blood fact" is that blood is always blue until it's exposed to oxygen… It's not! I wish people would stop saying/believing this but it seems like it's a common misconception that comes up every so often.

  11. If anyone's interested in opening a Robinhood stock trading account then use my link and we'll both get a free stock. http://share.robinhood.com/robertk234

  12. I underwent two episodes of blood loss and lived.  In one case the doctors said that I lost three-quarters of my blood and was only 3 days from death. On another occasion I lost two-thirds of my blood and had to take three months or so to recover. Both cases were terrifying!

  13. THIS MEANS A HUMAN CAN STILL WALK WITH LITTLE LESS THAN 3/4 PINT OF BLOOD, IF YOUR WONDERING. I HAD 20 PEOPLE SAY IIN THE HOSPITAL "I HAVE NEVER IN MY LIFE WITNESSED SOMEONE WITH SUCH LOW BLOOD REGARDLESS STILL ABLE TO WALK IN THE HOSPITAL" THE HUMAN BODY CAN HOLD 6 PINTS OF BLOOD. THEY PUMPED IN 5 ENTIRE PINTS. YOU DO THE MATH!! IF IT IS A SLOW BLOOD LOSS, YOU CAN STILL WALK. HOWEVER, YOUR SKIN WILL START TURNING PALE AND WHITE COLORED AS IF YOU WERE DEAD. WHAT I REMEMBER MOST WHILE RECIEvING THAT BLOOD, A TASTE OF COPPER IN MY MOUTH, BEING EXTREMELY THIRSTY ALL THE TIME BEFORE WHILE AND AFTER THE TRANSFUSION, BEFORE THE BLOOD TRANSFUSION, ALWAYS FALLING DOWN WHICH WAS WHY I WENT TO THE HOSPITAL, AND DURING THE TRANSFUSION IT FELT I TOOK AN OVERDOSE OF PAIN MEDICATION… FEELING LIKE I WAS ON CLOUD 9. HOPE THIS HELPS ANYONE IF YOU THINK YOU MAY NEED BLOOD.

    AND IF YOU DONATE BLOOD….. NEVER ALLOW THEM TO TAKE MORE THAN 1 PINT OF BLOOD….. SINCE YOUR BODY MAY TAKE A FULL YEAR TO RECOVER EVEN 1 PINT OF BLOOD, EVEN IF YOUR 18 OR YOUNGER.

  14. Rich vampire: Waiter, I want a bottle of the freshest blood you have.

    Middle-class vampire: Hi, I'd like to order a bowl of blood stew.

    Destitute vampire: Eh, maybe just give me a cup of hot water? pulls out used sanitary napkin

  15. I tried to kill myself using an 18gauge needle and 10ml syringe a few weeks ago. I removed well over 2500mls of my blood (5, 500ml water bottles full to the top is why I am certain of the amount). I did this lying supine. When I went to stand after I was passing out left and right. It became hard to breathe as well. I stopped only because my boyfriend.. Or umm.. Whatever he is finally decided to talk to me just to spin lies and promises he'd break just days later. I was under the impression that 2000ml of blood loss would do the trick. My blood loss was approximately done over an hour to an hour and a halfwith the needle inserted into my femoral artery. I believe laying flat on my back with my legs elevated helped me maintain consciousness.

    I still feel the effects, and I probably am not making blood like I should due to a recent osteomyelitis infection. In the hospital, since I do not accept blood transfusions, my hemoglobin had dipped down to. 1.9. At one point due to blood lose in surgery. I should add too that my choice in wanting to die has to do with chronic pain, coupled with lack of happiness in life for many years. This is not something I've taken lightly. I still fear dying, as is ingrained into us, hence why I need to get the balls up again, but I'm confident dying is the right choice for myself.

    Anyway, thank you for schooling me on where I went wrong, and the true volume I need to remove if I can't bring myself to simply severe my artery. I have also noted that I don't clot as well since that attempt. Anyway, thank you for this information. I don't want to.. Cause guilt to someone, but I find what I discovered worth noting, and well, I kinda had to explain the circumstances to do so. Thank you. You very well helped a person soon enough escape horrible chronic pain with no hope of relief who had gone many years with lack of happiness or any reason to continue.

  16. I have this disease called sickle cell e. It lowers all of my hemoglobin and can be very fatal. Lucky for me the only fatal thing that happened to me was when I was seven I had pain that was off the charts in my back and stomach. It made feel depressed and wanting to kill my self. It’s still stays with me and I hope it doesn’t happen again.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *