An architect from Aberdeenshire who survived losing five litres of blood and having to undergo an emergency hysterectomy 36 weeks into her pregnancy has launched a ‘Pledge a Pint’ campaign to help save others like her.
Annie Kenyon, whose self-titled architecture firm is based near Huntly, was rushed to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary when she began haemorrhaging and going into labour.
She lost 80% of her blood, but her life was saved by a transfusion.
And incredibly, earlier this month, Annie and her husband Duncan Barton celebrated their son Johnny Mac’s second birthday.
To mark the significant anniversary of the birth and her transfusion, and to coincide with World Blood Donation Day today, her campaign aims to get 100 people to donate a pint of blood.
‘I can’t thank everyone who saved me’
Annie said: “I had a difficult pregnancy and at my 16 week scan, I was put on ‘serious alert’ and warned that I might need a blood transfusion.
“At the time. I thought it won’t happen to me – blood transfusions are only for serious issues.
“When I was rushed to hospital I received numerous packs of donated blood – if I hadn’t, I wouldn’t be here today to live my life with my beautiful family.
“Unfortunately, I can’t thank all the individuals who saved my life by donating a pint of blood, so I want to do something to recognise the fabulous volunteers who give of their time to donate to help people they’ll never meet.”
Around 2% of the blood donated by people in Scotland is used to provide a vital lifeline for mothers, babies and young children.
Blood donation rules change
From today onwards, even more people in the country will be able to give blood as eligibility requirements change for gay and bisexual men.
Potential donors are now being assessed on a person-by-person basis, rather than being subject to “across-the-board” restrictions, which had left many men unable to give blood in the past solely because of their sexual orientation.
A new series of questions will be asked of all donors at their appointment – regardless of their age, sex or sexual orientation.
After her transfusion, Annie will never be able to give blood again, and says she wishes she had donated more while she was able to.
She added: “Life is always busy, we always think there will be tomorrow to do things, but actually there isn’t always a tomorrow; there wouldn’t have been for me if someone, somewhere, hadn’t donated blood.
“If anyone donates in support of Pledge a Pint, I’d love if they could let me know so I can add them to the list.”
Those who have donated can get in touch with Annie using her email: firstname.lastname@example.org