What It Is To Be Rh-Negative During Pregnancy

What Is A Rh-Negative?

In Rh-positive blood type, a certain protein called antigens are present on the surface of the red blood cells. In Rh-negative, those antigens are not present. To keep your growing baby and your health safe, you may require an anti-D injection later during pregnancy.

How To Know Your Blood Type?

There are two types of Rhesus(Rh) factor – Rh-positive and Rh-negative. After your first prenatal appointment, some routine blood tests are involved. The standard test performed is ‘group and antibodies’.

It will identify:

  • Blood group – A, B, AB, OR O
  • Rhesus factor – Positive or Negative

What If You Are Rh-Negative?

After the test, if the results show that you are Rh-negative, around 28th week of your pregnancy, you will be called for an indirect Coombs test. This shows whether your body is making Rh antibodies. If it is not making enough Rh antibodies, you are likely to get an injection Rh immunoglobulin (RhIg – RhoGAM). This shot protects your baby from any harm.

You’ll take another RhIg shot within 72 hours after you deliver the baby, only if your baby is Rh-positive.

When you don’t take proper prenatal care, if your and baby’s blood may have mixed due to some unlikely circumstances, you would have to take RhIg shot again.

How Will My Rh-Negative Blood Affect Baby?

If the blood type of the growing fetus is Rh-negative, it won’t affect. In case if it’s Rh-positive, your body might start making antibodies that could attack the positive Rh factor in your baby’s blood.

Usually, in the first pregnancy, there is no risk or problem unless you have problems of bleeding, abdominal injury, or your blood and baby’s blood mixes. But if it’s not your first pregnancy and the fetus is Rh-positive, the existing antibodies in your blood could destroy his red blood cells, causing a condition called hemolytic disease. It can cause anemia which could lead to jaundice, organ enlargement, heart failure, and possibly death.

Is It Safe To Take RhIg Shot?

Only 15% of pregnant women are Rh-negative, which means Rh-negative blood type is not exactly common. Your doctor should know how to handle and for the safety of both your and the growing fetus health, the injection is highly recommended. It is safe to take this injection. You must be aware that an injection of anti-D immunoglobulin does not give you any guarantee that you will not produce Rhesus antibodies. But, it does reduce the chances.

Note:

You must be aware that an injection of anti-D immunoglobulin does not give you any guarantee that you will not produce Rhesus antibodies. But, it does reduce the chances.

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