Mums get Anti-D jabs

Canning Times - - OPINION -

PREVENTATIVE Anti-D in­jec­tions are given to all preg­nant women with a neg­a­tive blood type in case their baby has pos­i­tive blood.

A baby’s blood is tested at birth so the in­jec­tions are given be­fore birth.

Seven­teen per cent of the pop­u­la­tion have neg­a­tive blood types.

A dif­fer­ence be­tween the mother’s blood and that of her baby can be fa­tal for the baby.

Dur­ing the birth of the first child, some blood from the baby via the pla­centa may en­ter the mother’s blood­stream.

If an­ti­bod­ies de­velop in the mother’s blood, they can at­tack fu­ture ba­bies in utero, caus­ing mis­car­riage.

The Anti-D Pro­gram takes the blood of 150 spe­cial plasma donors who al­ready have an an­ti­body that com­bats for­eign blood. When Anti-D is given to a mother dur­ing preg­nancy and af­ter the baby’s birth it does the work for her, so her blood does not have to cre­ate its own an­ti­bod­ies.

This Anti-D plasma even­tu­ally wears off, mean­ing the mother would need fur­ther in­jec­tions for any fu­ture preg­nan­cies.

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