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Rh- paranoia

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Seriously I have had no problems during this pregnancy. I've dodged all the scary bullets so far, no problem. Only thing is, I'm Rh- and dh is Rh+. So far no antibodies. I declined the prenatal Rhogam because it didn't seem necessary and sounded like it could possibly be risky, but I'll definitely get the one after birth assuming the baby is +. It was hard to make a decision on the prenatal dose because it seemed like both decisions were right, and both decisions were wrong. I'm still pretty sure that declining it was the best idea. But I can't stop obsessively worrying about this. I know that in order for our blood to mix we would have to be in a real crisis, a car wreck, get beaten up, something REALLY bad. But I still worry every time, say, the dog jumps on me. Like last night, she was playing and crashed her somewhat large, muscular dog butt into my belly. I completely freaked out and I can't stop obsessing over it. It didn't hurt me (though it kind of winded me, since the uterus has nowhere to go but my diaphragm now), the baby is moving, everything seems FINE, but I can't stop worrying about the Rh factor. I don't want to bother my midwives about it, since I know what they'll say, that it's nothing to worry about and wasn't anything that could have caused that kind of problem. So why can't I just let go of the worrying?

I guess I have to focus all my free-floating anxiety somewhere. It doesn't help that I just woke up from a really awful pregnancy-related nightmare. Ugh. I won't even describe it, it was too creepy. Anyhow just had to talk about this to someone and I feel stupid bringing it up irl.
post #2 of 11
I can sympathize - I too am Rh- and dh is Rh+ and both boys are Rh+. I'm thinking the likihood of this baby being Rh+ is pretty high. That said, I declined the prenatal RhoGam. This is honestly the first pregnancy that I was told I have a choice (I switched from an ob to my mw, whom I ). She told me that it wasn't needed unless there was a serious injury to my abdomen, and even then, you have a 72 hour window in which to get the shot. She also had read years ago research about problems that could be caused by getting the RhoGam prenatally if the baby turned out Rh- (and she can't remember where she read it so I don't have an actual reference). I did not see the risk prenatally to be worth the risk of problems caused by being injected with mercury and other toxins, and having those cross the placenta to the baby.
post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
Yeah that was pretty much the thought process I went through. I didn't want such an unknown quantity being introduced into my body while the baby is living in there. Though they've discontinued the mercury ingredient, it's still a blood product with all the risks entailed, and there are other preservatives. So I am happy with my decision, I'm just a worrier. I totally couldn't win this one either way. Meh.
post #4 of 11
... I can totally get the worrier part. (And I had forgotten about the mercury being removed ... that makes me feel a bit better about the one I'm going to get after the birth assuming this babe is Rh+ like his/her brothers and daddy.)
post #5 of 11
I also declined the rhogam prenatally. My understanding is that the risk with sensitization is not so much for the current pregnancy being carried but for any future pregnancies. You would have 72 hours to get the shot in the event of a trauma, same as after birth. I would assume you'd have some sort of symptom like pain or spotting to accompany a bad enough trauma to cause blood mingling, but I am not sure. That's just how I'd think of it for myself. If you are really worried, don't worry about bothering the midwives. That's what they are there for, and maybe their reassurance will be what you need to hear in the end. I'm sure they'd rather spend 5 minutes on the phone with you than know you are fretting.

Oh, and there's the chance the baby isn't + anyway - my two heterozygous positive parents conceived negative ol' me! You are -- for the protein, but if your husband is a heterozygous positive (+- instead of ++), he may have donated his -.

Finally, if the baby is +, you can also get your titers checked for the antibody after delivery, which might help you feel at ease for a future pregnancy.
post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 
Yeah we know dh's mom is + but we can't remember about his dad. I am so sure I remember him saying he was a "universal donor" which would be O- though, so I'm hoping that maybe this baby isn't even +, what a relief that would be!

Thanks for listening to me obsess about this, folks. Rationally I know I really don't have much to worry about, but it's hard to keep the emotions from getting in the way of reason sometimes.
post #7 of 11
I'm Rh- (O- to be exact) and DH is +. DS1 was +...
This time around I actually went ahead and took the prenatal Rhogam. My reasoning was (and this is just totally a personal thing), my mom was in a terrible car accident when I was pregnant with DS1. It made me realize how easy it is for something like that to happen at any moment and it just made me feel better to know that the Rh factor would be one less thing to worry about in that situation. Again, that's just a personal thing though. I wouldn't have taken it if it had mercury though...
Btw, the amount of blood that would have to mix is quite high. My mw said that more than likely, if you had that much blood exchange during the pregnancy (from something like the dog jumping on you for example), it would probably also be indicated with spotting and bleeding as well.
post #8 of 11
Thread Starter 
If you get the routine prenatal shot, and then you are in an accident, do you have to get another shot? That was one thing that always confused me.
post #9 of 11
I feel so foolish, I didn't know you could decline . I had it with DD and she was positive and I had with this one a few weeks ago. Now I'm worried b/c I did have the shot .
post #10 of 11
Originally Posted by BelgianSheepDog
If you get the routine prenatal shot, and then you are in an accident, do you have to get another shot? That was one thing that always confused me.
Yes. It depends on the amount of fetal-maternal bleed, since a 300mcg RhoGAM protects against a certain amount of fetal blood, and any above that it doesn't, so you would need multiple doses. I think the most I ever gave was five, to a mom with a massive abruption.

I chose to have prenatal RhoGAM. I'm isoimmunized against another blood factor (Kell) and I don't need to add even the small chance of isoimmunization against Rh. Also, it's possible to have a small fetal-maternal hemorrhage (concealed abruption) with few or no symptoms or apparent cause, and still have it be enough to sensitize.
post #11 of 11
I too am Rh-, this is my 5th pregnancy. My first ended in a very messy miscarriage. I didn't go to the doctor as I didn't have insurance then and I was very young. Didn't know my blood type or anything about Rhogam.
With my second, dh saved me from having the shot. That baby is + and I had a split placenta and bled out during delivery. the next 2 deliveries were clean and none of the babies showed any signs of Rh disease. I took 6 dandelion root daily to help combat any ill effects on baby.
With this pregnancy, I relucantly went to an OB in the beginning and had some blood work done. She told me that I had the antibodies and if I didn't get the shot that my baby would die.
My midwife wasn't convince that I was even sensitized because none of the children had any symptoms. So she bought a book on it (don't know the name) and she said I was doing everything right. Eating lots of greens and taking dandelion and liquid vitos, etc. She had me go get a blood screen for her sake and it turns out I am NOT sensitized. The previous Dr. LIED to me.

FYI, if this is your first baby, you are perfectly safe. You can't become sensitized until after the birth. If you are already sensitized, Rhogam will do you no good. Once the antibodies are there, they are there to stay and can not be controlled by a shot. It's like getting a vaccine after you have the disease.
You also increase your chances of being sensitized by having amnio's, cvs testing and dnc's.
Have your midwife do a blood test on baby afterward to see the blood type so you can prepare for next time.
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