Blood Types and Transfusion, How Accurate We Need to Be….

Background

You may have asked yourself why I have this type of blood and not the other, and why there are different types of blood, we could’ve all had the same blood type! Off course the answer of why there are only four blood types and not one or five is difficult to answer and it’s left to the world creator! However, there do exists scientific explanation of why one have certain blood type and not the other, here is how it works…

A human may know their blood type but not necessarily know what does that means! There are four types of blood A, B, AB, & O; each one of them has certain anti-gene on the red blood cell (RBC) surface. For example, blood type A has A anti-gene, B has B-anti-gene, AB has A and B anti-genes, and O doesn’t have either A or B anti-gene. On the other hand, blood plazma has B antibody for A blood type, A antibody for B blood type, A and B antibody for O blood type, and finally blood type AB plazma doesn’t have antibody. Blood plazma antibodies are the only antibody that can be found naturally and intrinsically in our bodies without any immune stimulation.

You may also have heard that you have a positive or negative blood type; that’s mean you may or may not have another type of anti-gene protein on the surface of the red blood cells (RBC), this anti-gene is called Rhesus (Rh) factor. For example, a blood type A+ means that this blood has an A anti-gene with Rh factor, while A- means that this blood has an A anti-gene with no Rh factor.

The majority blood type in human beings is O and the minority is AB, on the other hand most people has a + or Rh factor and negative Rh is less common.

Blood type by Zappys Technology Solutions Licensed Under CC BY 2.0

Who Can Give What?

Interestingly, blood type O is called the universal donor since it can be accepted by all blood types, while blood type AB is called the universal acceptor. Also, negative Rh can be accepted by both positive and negative Rh blood type, and the opposite isn’t true. Blood type can usually be determined using a specific blood type test called “Blood Typing and Screening”.

If Things Go Wrong!

If an incompatible blood type is given to a patient, then this will lead to the immune system of the patient will produce antibodies against any blood antigens that don’t have in patients’ blood. That’s mean people with type A blood create antibodies against B antigens. A person with type A blood receiving a transfusion of type B or AB blood would have an ABO incompatibility reaction.

Whose Responsibility to Provide the Correct Blood Type?

Before a blood transfusion, the doctor will order a blood type and screen and a small sample will be cross matched with some of donated blood and then monitor the reaction. This way, we can make sure there will be no incompatibility reaction during and after transfusion.

There are many precautions in place to reduce the chances of a mistake such as checking the identities of donors to ensure that their details match the information on their blood sample. Double checking the blood type of both patient and blood packs before each transfusion.

The doctor and nurse look for certain symptoms during and after blood transfusion that might mean the patient is having a reaction. Among these symptoms are fever, chills, breathing difficulties, nausea, chest or back pain. If any of these happens during transfusion, then the process should be stopped immediately.

Finally, the blood transfusion process is a very critical and people in charge need to be extra careful to avoid any mistakes which may lead irreversible complications.

References:

Blood Donations/Blood Banking. Retrieved June 19, 2017, from http://www.pinnaclehealth.org/wellness-library/blog-and-staywell/health-resources/article/26537

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