Rh negative: Pregnancy, testing, results, and treatment – Medical News Today

Rh negative: Pregnancy, testing, results, and treatment – Medical News Today

A negative Rhesus (Rh) test can have certain implications for a pregnancy. However, with the right medical care, people and their babies with Rh incompatibility can experience a healthy pregnancy and delivery.

The Rh factor is an inherited protein that may appear on the surface of red blood cells.

Testing negative for Rh protein is not a problem in itself, but in some cases, a pregnant individual may have a different Rh status from their baby. Without suitable care, this incompatibility could cause medical problems during and after pregnancy.

This article discusses testing Rh-negative during pregnancy, results, risks, and follow-ups.

Rh-positive is the most common blood type, which means that a person’s red blood cells have this protein. The remainder of the population is Rh-negative.

A person who is Rh-negative will not experience health issues from their blood type. However, there may be complications if they become pregnant with a partner who is Rh-positive. In this scenario, the fetus may inherit Rh-positive blood.

During pregnancy, blood from the fetus can cross the placenta and enter the parent’s blood. With Rh incompatibility, this can cause a harmful immune response to the fetus or newborn. The parent’s immune system may recognize this blood as foreign material and produce antibodies against the Rh-positive blood.

Proper testing and care drastically reduce any risk to parent and child who have different Rh factors.

Medical professionals recommend Rh testing at the beginning of every pregnancy. Being aware of Rh incompatibility is crucial for minimizing potential risks.

Other recommended tests and screenings may include:

  • having regular antibody screening throughout pregnancy
  • testing the other parent’s Rh status
  • determining the fetus’s Rh status through amniocentesis

Research has shown that Rh incompatibility is less problematic during a first pregnancy. In such cases, doctors may choose to rely on regular antibody screening tests. These can show whether a pregnant person is producing too many antibodies.

Rh screening and antibody testing involve simple blood tests. These are typically quick and painless for both parents.

In certain cases, a fetus may be at risk for anemia. Doctors can check for this condition using advanced ultrasound imaging. If a fetus shows signs of anemia, doctors can induce an early delivery or provide blood transfusions to the fetus.

Read more about Rh factor screening here.

When tests reveal Rh incompatibility, this can lead to a number of risks for the developing fetus.

Some most common risks after birth include:

If a pregnant person experiences Rh incompatibility, their immune system may attack the fetus’s blood. This can cause anemia if the fetus loses more blood cells than they can produce.

Since red blood cells carry oxygen …….

Source: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/rh-negative