Rhesus neg/antibodies question

(8 Posts)
nicelyneurotic Thu 30-Jul-15 18:30:49

Hi

Hope someone knowledgeable will be able to help me. I've just received frst trimester my blood test results. It says I'm rh negative, which I knew, and that the antibody screen is positive.

What does this mean? Does it mean my blood is likely to attack the baby? I've done some googling and am a bit worried. And I don't get a midwife appointment until I'm 16 weeks which is ages away.

This is my second pregnancy.

Buttercup27 Thu 30-Jul-15 18:32:11

You'll be given 2 anti d injections. I can't remember when the first is but the 2nd is straight after delivery.

Pancakeflipper Thu 30-Jul-15 18:34:10

Don't worry - I was the same. I can recall 1 injection but not the other. And all was fine.

They are aware, you are aware and that is the best position to be in which is why screening is fab.

nicelyneurotic Thu 30-Jul-15 18:46:50

Thanks. I read that if you've already produced the antibodies then the injection won't help? I had the injections last time.

fishcake84 Thu 30-Jul-15 18:47:08

Two issues here: rhesus group is significant for baby, antibody screen is more significant for you.

Basically, if your other half is rhesus positive, there is a chance of your baby being rhesus positive and your body making antibodies against the rhesus factor. Not usually a huge issue in first pregnancy, but if you were to have a second rhesus positive pregnancy there is an increased risk of miscarriage from your antibodies (made in first pregnancy) attacking the fetus. Anti D is given to reduce the risk of this happening - it "mops up" any of the fetus' rhesus positive blood that makes it into your blood system. It is safe and it is standard practice to be given it at (I think) 27 weeks and any time you have any bleeding in pregnancy (after 10 ish weeks). At delivery, your baby's umbilical cord blood will be tested and if it is rhesus positive you will be given a second dose of anti D.

The second thing is the antibody screen. This is significant for if you need to receive a blood transfusion during/after delivery. There are hundreds of different markers in the blood other than the ABO and rhesus group. Some of them are significant, some aren't. The screen has picked up that you have some antibodies against some markers. It hasn't said whether they are significant ones. You will likely need more in depth blood tests a little later in pregnancy to establish which antibodies you have. If you have any that are significant, it means you would need specially cross-matched blood which usually isn't immediately available in hospitals, so would have to be ordered in especially for you. Very unlikely you will need it, but always nice to know it is there!

I suspect when your midwife sees the positive antibody screen you will be referred for consultant care at your local hospital so they can talk you through it in more depth.

Hope this is helpful!

nicelyneurotic Thu 30-Jul-15 18:57:29

Thank you, that is very helpful. My first baby was rh positive (like my husband) and I had a miscarriage earlier this year.

fishcake84 Thu 30-Jul-15 20:30:43

Sorry for your miscarriage. There are many many reasons for a miscarriage and rhesus incompatibility is just one. Furthermore, if you received anti D in your first pregnancy, it is very unlikely that you would have an antibody reaction to a subsequent pregnancy. What I'm trying to say is that your mc is almost definitely NOT due to your DH being rhesus pos.

nicelyneurotic Thu 30-Jul-15 20:45:23

Thanks so much. I'm not worried now.

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