At my first antenatal appointment I had the first glimpse of my baby via ultrasound scan and my bloods taken for screening against various diseases, as well as to find out my blood type.
About a week after this appointment, I received my blood results back via a letter in the post. My husband was in work at the time, but luckily my mum was on hand to calm any nerves. I opened the results to the happy wording of "no problems have been found". Phew.
As I read down the letter, I noticed that the results had come back recording my blood type as O Rhesus Negative (about 5% of the population). I had always known I was Rhesus Negative, but assumed I was the same as my mum who is A Rhesus Negative.
In your first pregnancy, being Rhesus Negative isn't usually a concern, but may mean undergoing extra care to prevent any issues if you get pregnant in the future.
This table shows the expected blood type of your baby based on what yours and the father's is.
We don't actually know what blood group my husband is, but based on statistics, it's likely that he is Rhesus Positive. This means that my baby could be Rhesus Positive and if our bloods mix, my immune system could create antibodies against the rhesus antigens. Which isn't a problem in a first pregnancy but could cause issues in ones to follow, such as jaundice and a serious condition called Haemolytic Disease of the newborn.
In my next midwife appointment, she went through a few facts and pointers with me. Basically, If I notice any bleeding from now on (down below), I must go straight to the hospital to ensure it hasn't mixed with baby's, particularly if I've had a fall or been involved in a car crash.
I will also be having an injection called Anti-D to prevent the production of any antibodies against Baby S - I think she said I would have this around the 24 week mark in one dose, followed by more bloods to ensure I have no Rhesus Positive Antigens in my system.
Being Rhesus Negative isn't a problem in this day and age, with all the brilliant research and healthcare we are blessed with; our midwives and nurses know exactly what they need to do - we are rather lucky!
Are you Rhesus Negative too? Are you one of the 5% in the world? Let me know in the comments below.