Lots of Blood Chat and it’s nothing to do with Halloween!

Pregnancy has lots of ups and downs and unfortunately for me this one has had more downs than ups! A few months after I had Miss C I had to get my gall bladder out and when I went for my pre op check up they discovered Antibodies in my blood. I was told there was nothing to worry about and all it meant was that if I needed a blood transfusion that I would need very specific blood. Thankfully I didn’t need any transfusions and I put it to the back of my mind.

Skip forward a few months and I go for my booking appointment and get bloods done. I put the antibody thing so far to the back of my mind that I totally forgot to mention it to the midwife! I then got a frantic phone call from her to say that they had discovered antibodies in my blood and I would need to go back and get more taken. I then explained that I was aware of the problem and was told there was no need to worry about it. I asked if it would cause any problem with the baby and was told there was still nothing to worry about.

I went back up a few weeks later and had more bloods taken and this time the antibody was missing. I was so relieved that there was nothing there so put it to the back of my head again. The midwife said they would keep an eye on it and check me again a few weeks and when they did the wee bugger was back! I asked again if it could cause an issue and was told not to worry, that I was being monitored and would be seen by the Consultant.

Skip forward a few weeks and I was back in to see the midwife and Consultant. The antibody was still showing up in my blood and I sat and had a really good conversation with the consultant about what it meant and what the options were. I was totally taken aback because she told me that it could lead to complications which had never been expressed to me before.  She told me that if the baby didn’t have the antibody in their blood then effectively my blood would start to fight theirs and if this was the case then the baby might need to have blood transfusions.  At first I seriously thought that she meant once the baby was born, oh how naive am I? A good 5 minutes went past until I realised that she meant in-utero. Then she hit me with the bomb that if they went through that and it didn’t work then they might need to induce the baby prematurely. I’m not usually lost for words but this time was an exception. I honestly had no idea and was so shocked that it took me a few minutes to talk! (That also never happens).

The Consultant was informative and very supportive. She told me to try not to worry and assured me that there was nothing I could do to change it or fix it so just to stay calm and relaxed. Easier said than done but thankfully I’m not usually one to panic until I’ve got something to panic for. I went home with lots of information and an action plan which helps I do like to have a plan to work to! My bloods will be taken every few weeks to check if the antibody is still showing up and I will get a scan in a few weeks time to see what’s going on in there. Amazingly if my blood is attacking the baby’s, then the baby knows to push more blood up to the brain to protect themselves. Pregnancy is fascinating and I’ve always been in awe of what happens during it, but this is simply amazing that the baby knows what to do to keep itself safe 🙂 Poor Mr B hasn’t gotten out of it either, he’s having to give blood samples too so the consultant has full information to make a decision on how best to go forward if we need to.

There is always the possibility that the baby has the same antibody as me and all will be fine and none of this will be necessary so we are praying and hoping that this is the response we get in a few weeks and not the scary stuff but if it is then we will deal with it. At least I’m informed and feel I now have all the information that I need to make decisions. Lets just hope it doesn’t come to that