Rhesus factor and pregnancy

How does the Rh factor affect pregnancy?

Future mom and dad can have excellent Rh factors. So, if the mother and father are Rh-positive, then the baby will inherit a similar Rh factor in the future. The same happens when there is a negative Rh factor in the blood of both parents. If the mother has a positive Rh factor, and the father has a Rh-negative factor, there will be no complications during pregnancy. But if it turned out that the mother is the owner of Rh-negative factor in the presence of the Rh-positive factor in the father, there is a Rhesus-conflict that carries a certain threat.

The fact is, in the body of the Rh-negative pregnant woman in response to a positive Rh factor of the fetus, antibodies are being developed - the immune system perceives the Rh-positive red blood cells as a foreign baby. Rhesus antibodies are able to penetrate the placenta, where the destruction of the fetal erythrocytes begins. A consequence of this state of affairs for the baby may be anemia (a decrease in hemoglobin), intoxication, disruption of the vital organs. All this together is called hemolytic disease. It often develops immediately after the birth of the baby, and its treatment is quite complicated. Sometimes a newborn needs a blood transfusion - he is injected with Rh-negative blood and resuscitative measures are carried out.

In fact, all these terrible consequences can be avoided, if deliberate and balanced approach to planning pregnancy. Many women only after the spontaneous abortion found out that the cause of miscarriage was the presence in their blood of a Rh factor negative. Since their carriers are 15-20% of the female population, it is necessary in the process of pregnancy planning to establish their blood type and Rh factor. If the pregnancy has already occurred, then in the women's clinic they must take the blood for Rh-prescribing. If it turned out that the pregnant woman is the carrier of the Rh-negative factor, she is taken on a special account. Careful monitoring in this case is simply necessary. So, a woman will often enough to donate blood from a vein - so doctors will be able to track whether there is a pregnant antibody in the body, and if there is, then how their number varies. Up to 32 weeks, blood is given once a month, from 32 to 35 weeks - twice a month, and from this time until delivery, weekly. Modern medical equipment allows you to keep an eye on the condition and development of the fetus, to detect the severity of hemolytic disease in time and, if necessary, to carry out intrauterine blood transfusion. The main task of this procedure is to improve the condition of the fetus and prolong the pregnancy. Early or late labor in the case of a negative Rh factor in the mother will be dangerous, the best time for the baby to appear is 35-37 weeks.

It should be noted that at the first pregnancy the risk of developing Rh-conflict is low, because the mother's immune system first meets with foreign erythrocytes. In this regard, antibodies that can destroy the red blood cells of the fetus, are produced in small quantities. Therefore, if it turned out that the future mother is the owner of a negative Rh factor, the termination of pregnancy is contraindicated - so there is a chance of the appearance of a healthy full-fledged baby. In the case of the next pregnancy, the situation is aggravated: antibodies from a previous pregnancy are already present in the blood of a pregnant woman. And now they are able to penetrate the placenta and destroy the red blood cells of the baby.

In any case, if the mother has a negative Rh factor, strict medical control is necessary. The necessary treatment is prescribed by the doctor after a careful study of all the facts. I am glad that today the development of Rh-conflict can be prevented with the introduction of a special vaccine - antiresus immunoglobin. This drug, which is introduced immediately after the first birth or interrupted pregnancy, binds aggressive antibodies and removes them from the mother's body. Thus, they will not be able to damage the future baby.

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