I kind of get what this whole thing is about, but some of it is still confusing...
Okay, so I "broke up" with my doctor yesterday because we have decided to have a midwife assisted homebirth (yay!)...but I went to my appointment yesterday anyway, just to tie up the loose ends, get my results of the glucose test (no gd yay!) etc..
...so he tells me I am RH negative, okay cool....I get that, so he offers the shot thing, which I refused for now because I wanted to discuss it with my midwife and also confirm what my hubby is....
My MIL insists that hubby is RH negative, so I thought cool, nothing to worry about, if we are both negative, baby will be negative, no shots, no problem etc---okay, well, my doctor said that he could have a negative blood type but have postitive RH "elements" that make him RH positive---
ARGH the whole thing is confusing to me really...hubby is 35 so I don't think they did the whole RH thing that long ago, I think his mom might be mistaking the fact that he has a negative blood type to say he is RH negative---but does that mean he is or not?
ARGH, I would like to avoid the shot, but of course I will get it if I must....I would like to avoid having to test DH's blood to see if he is RH negative because he doesn't have insurance (I have it through medicaid for pregnancy)...but I guess that is what I will have to end up doing...
Is there anyone who can clear anything up for me? If hubby has a negative blood type, does that mean he is automatically RH negative or what?
I don't have a clue what your dr meant by he might have a negative blood type but still be RH positive. The - on your blood type from what I understand is how you determine if a certain enzyme is present. RH- people don't have that enzyme in their blood. I would double check with your mw and see what she has to say about it. Just to make sure.
If you want a cheap (and nice!) way to find out your dh's blood type, have him go and donate blood. They'll test it for him and tell him what it is.
Bayer makes a non-preservative, non thirmesol form of the shot called Bay-rho.
Agree with Fiddledebbi...donate!
Any blood bank should type his blood for you- I seem to remember my perinatologist saying that you could be Rh + and have some antibody markers, but I'm not sure.
I got the mercury-free shot Bay-Rho (made by Bayer) instead of RhoPhylac or Rhogam, as my dh is O+
Half-marathon running Mommy to 3 spunky girls and 1 sweet boy. Spending my days and nights where my kids need me most- at home with them!!
So if you are feeling pressured by your OB to make this descision right away, relax, it can definately wait a day or two for you to research this a bit more thouroughly.
Although widely considered safe by mainstream medicine Rogam is a class C drug, so it's prenatal safety hasn't been confirmed in human and animal studies, so IMO you are right to seek more info so that you can make an educated descision about it's risks.
On the issue of whether or not prenatal Rhogam is necessary at all that's a topic up for debate. As someone else mentioned the risk of prenatal mixing of the blood is actually very low. It only occurs in 1.8% of pregnancies and that is including women who were involved in a serious trauma like a car accident or a beating. So for a woman experiencing a totally normal pg the risk of prenatal sensitization if so low as to be barely calculatable. There is also research that indicates that prenatal sensitizations are more minor and that it might take 12 such microbleeds for any true rhesus incompatability to occur. Even with the shot there is still a .4% chance of prenatal sensitization and in fact even some evidence that having the shot might cause it. With all that in mind I refused my prenatal Rhogam this time around with the understanding that if something were to occur that would put me at higher risk (like a trauma) then I would get the shot. We're the only country that routinely does give it to basically all RH- women prenatally. My midwives were totally comfortable with that choice and did not object to it at all even though I'm sure that all their other patients get it. I will get the postnatal shot because that is the one where you truly risk developing the antibodies and then I'm not exposing my child to a foreign substance when the risk is so incredibly low. I did get the shot with my first three but I didn't realize at the time that it was actually a human blood product or the whole mercury issue etc. I did have mercury free available to me but while they were checking into that for me I was doing research and ended up feeling that it just wasn't necessary so I skipped it.
Originally Posted by pamamidwife
Yay, Wasabi! What a great post!
Originally Posted by wasabi
I have never even heard of someone suggesting that a father with a negative bloodtype could somehow have positive elements. That's simply not true. Negative is the recessive type so if you're negative you only have negative. Now your DH could have a positive blood type and yet have negative elements that would lead to you producing a negative child together. That would happen basically 25% of the time that you have kids. So if your doc thought you were basing it on your previously having a negative child well ok that might be one thing. But if both of you are negative and you are sure (my brother's dogtags are wrong *ack*!) then you don't need the shot.
|The first of these concerned the 'Du' blood test result which shows that a woman is weakly rhesus positive. Even though on some tests these women may appear to be rhesus negative, they are functionally the same as rhesus-positive women and therefore do not need to consider anti-D (Hoffbrand et al., 199).|
And yes as you were guessing at the end of your post RH factor is not specific to O blood types at all.
Originally Posted by wasabi
I guess my first question would be how common is this and who even gets this test done? Even very mainstream sources will agree that if your DH is negative you're in the clear. Secondly I can see where it would matter more for the woman since being functionally positive gives you an automatic get out of jail free card on the anti-D issue but if the man is actually genetically negative even if he's somehow functionally positive I guess I would wonder how far that functionally positiveness goes? Can he actually pass it on to his kids or not? I'd be really interested to read any stats about how often people are weakly positive. I know I've given tons of blood and platelets so presumably by now someone would have figured out if my blood acted positive. I'm intrigued but am betting this is something that would be so rare as to barely be worth throwing into the equation. Of course that's from my pov as someone who has decided it's not necessary with a partner who is categorically positive so that's my grain of salt of course.
jk, no really, I am going to ask my midwife about it--like I said, hubby is definately O- and I guess I will ask exactly what I am...my mom tried to find it in my birth record things, but she could only find HER bloodtype which is O+ ...but since I am definately RH- and blood type is inherited, I am assuming I could be O- ...but then again I never knew my bio Dad, so what he was is a mystery bloodtype-wise...
Anywhoo, I am glad I refused the shot, knowing how rare the actual disorder or whatever is, and especially since my hubby is 100% positive he is RH- and the doc said I was too, so there is nothing to worry about---
Like I said, the weird thing the doc said about "positive elements" threw me for a loop, but maybe he was just pushing the shot or misunderstood what I said, or like one poster said, maybe thought I was um, of *questionable* morals and maybe my hubby wasn't the father...lol....
I am glad I fired him for my homebirthing midwife....further solidifies that making the decision to home birth is the best one...
Jennifer, LPN and nursing student, Doula, CPST, and VBAC mama x3 to
AJ (5/03), Evan (12/04), Ilana (11/06), Olivia (2/09), and Unity (8/2012)
Originally Posted by thepeach80
Let's see...it's already been established you do not need the shot since DH is rh-. I have what has been called a 'weak-D' antibody meaning on some blood type tests I come up as rh- when in fact I am rh+, always have been. The only place that types me as rh- is the lab my OB uses. I have had them run this several times and they do it again w/ each pgcy. The first time I thought it was odd and agreed to the rhogam (my dh is A+). AJ is A- and I typed rh+ at the hospital when I gave birth to him. This time around I waived the rhogam shot w/ no problems from my OB (he's pretty good if you're educated, but that's another thread). Evan is O+ and I once again typed rh+ at the hospital (you should've seen the nurses flip out when I was in labor though b/c I hadn't had the shot at 28 wks, you'd think I was trying to kill the baby). So, I guess the moral of this story is research, lol, and I just like to talk about my weird blood. I also like the fact that my kids have a 25% chance of being any blood type! :LOL
I'm RH- and at this point am just relieved that my OB is willing to see if she can get me some non-mercury stuff...
Originally Posted by Pom
I'm confused. I thought the shots you get now are for the NEXT baby? Is that why some of you are only getting the after shots?
I had the 28 week shot with my dd and when I found out that there was likely mercury in that shot, I was really pissed. (the number of rh- moms with austic kids is huge in comparison to rh+ moms) In the end, I'm pretty sure the shot I got was mercury free. But, other issues make me leary of the prophylactic (28 week) shot so I have declined it with this pregnancy. Check out wasabi's previous post in this thread -- it pretty much explains it.
The major medical associations recommend postnatal usage only because we have not done studies on the effect on the fetus. It's the manufacturer who recommends we get it prenatally as well. This couldn't be about money could it? Surely not! Anyway basically they tested Rhogam on male prisoners and found that giving them Rhogam within 72 hours of an exposure stopped sensitization. Based on that alone we now say women have to have Rhogam within 72 hours of a birth, miscarriage, abortion, trauma etc. But honestly we have no idea that it needs to be 72 hours. It might well be that a week would do just fine. It might be that the shot really doesn't do anything. A friend posed to me the question of why some other women's antibodies being injected into me would be good but my body making its own would be bad? But regardless the picking of 28 weeks is fairly random. I think it has to do with the fact that theoretically we'll give birth within 12 weeks and the shot is only good for 12 weeks. Of course if you go overdue they don't give you another dose even though the original has worn off. Not to mention which who's to say that you haven't had a microbleed more than 72 hours prior to 28 weeks? The whole thing is a bit silly considering the low risk prenatally for most women. The postnatal shot is a different issue and certainly more of us feel comfortable exposing ourselves to it than do exposing our babies to it.
I am not a fan of routine 28w rhogam, and I'm a huge fan of Wickham's book.
With that said, I wanted to point out that not receiving rhogam during your pregnancy can affect your current baby. Sensitization can occur at any point during pregnancy, most likely ift is after some kind of trauma--a bleed, a blow to the abdomen, but Wickman also points out other ways that a microbleed might happen---after doppler/ultrasound use for example. Now if these things happen early on in the pregnancy, it could compromise the baby. It is rare, of course, but it can happen. The reason it is given at 28w, is 2fold, 1)it lasts about 12w bringing you up to birth, and 2)most cases of sensitization occur after 28w. This is part of the reason why, after a lot of soul-searching, I received rhogam (mercury-free) at 20w after I started bleeding from a low-lying placenta. I also want more children, so for me it sealed the deal,
Of course, this does not matter to our-veggie-baby, b/c her hubby is neg anyway :LOL