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Have AB negative blood group. How rare it is and what are the risks of having it?

Answered by
Dr. Ganesh Sanap


Practicing since :2007

Answered : 561 Questions

Posted on Fri, 25 Jan 2013 in Genetics
Question: I have always been told that I have a very rare blood type which is AB negative with the RH positive factor. It is now my understanding that it really is not that rare at all and I am considered a universal reciepipent (sp) in the event of an emergency. It is also my understanding that my blood type does not have any antibodies in it. That being the case why am I at risk for blue babies in the event of pregnancy? Am I correct in saying that B negative blood is the rarest. Blood type? Why am I told that I should be donating my own blood in the event of an emergency.
Answered by Dr. Ganesh Sanap 3 hours later
Thanks for writing in.
You are right in understanding the ABO blood group system. You don't have a rare blood group. Its just that you are universal recipient, which means you could receive blood from anybody. You have AB negative blood group, it means no antibodies against A and B antigen. So you can receive blood from any blood group.
B negative blood group is not rarest. O negative blood group is rarest because it has antibodies against both A and B antigen. So it has to receive blood from same donor only.
Now regarding the blue baby. It is due to Rh incompatibility. However usually, the first baby escape the reaction as it is just a sensitisation reaction (which means the antibodies are getting formed during this pregnancy). In the next pregnancy, the baby gets affected due to direct action of maternal antibodies, which were formed during the previous pregnancy. It is quite difficult to understand the reaction as you need thorough understanding of physiology of pregnancy and antibodies. This can be prevented by giving you appropriate immunization during the 1st pregnancy. I hope I have answered your query. Please let me know if you have any further concerns.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Aparna Kohli
Follow up: Dr. Ganesh Sanap 31 minutes later
Hi Dr. Sanap:

Thanks so much for the clarification

Answered by Dr. Ganesh Sanap 1 hour later
I am glad I could help.
If you are satisfied with the response, please write a review and rate the answer.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Aparna Kohli

The User accepted the expert's answer

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