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How can I find out my blood type?

Posted by Be Well

How can I find out my blood type?
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Blood types are no longer routinely checked by your doctor, as finding out your blood type is usually only important in certain medical situations.

If you do wish to find out your blood type, one of the easiest ways is to donate some of your blood. During a donation, your blood will be tested to find out what type of blood it is, and this will then be recorded on your donor card. This way you will not only find out your blood type, but you'll also be helping to save lives as well!

The reason your blood type is checked when making a donation is so that it can be matched to someone who has the same, or a compatible blood type. If two different blood types are mixed, the different chemicals in the blood, known as antigens, can attack one another, causing the blood to clot. Because of this, your blood type will always be tested before you receive any kind of blood transfusion.

You will also have your blood type tested if you are pregnant. This is to check to see if you have a blood type known as rhesus negative. If you are rhesus negative, and your baby has inherited a rhesus positive blood type from the father, the mismatch of blood types can sometimes cause your body to produce antibodies (proteins which fight infection) which attack the baby's red blood cells.

This condition can be easily treated by having an anti-D injection straight after giving birth. This simple and effective treatment destroys any of the potentially harmful antibodies, and is effective in 99% of cases.

You can ask your doctor to perform a blood test. However, you may have to pay if the test is not being carried out for a specific medical reason.

NOTICE: The information provided on this site is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your physician or other qualified health provider because of something you have read on Wellsphere. If you have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately.
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