Do You Belong To A Rare Blood Group?


Lord of Penmai
Jul 5, 2011
Do You Belong To A Rare Blood Group?

Most people state their blood groups as A, B or O. Little is known about rare blood groups that exist in a minority of human beings.

How is a blood group determined?
The easiest way to determine your blood group is to get a blood group test. Blood groups are based on antigens. Now, we follow the ABO grouping system coupled with the Rhesus factor for determining blood groups. As in, a blood group test will tell you whether you have A, B or O antigen in your blood. It will also to tell you whether or not you have the Rhesus factor, a type of protein, in your blood.if you have the Rhesus fact then your blood group is positive, like A+. If this protein is missing, it your blood group is negative, like A-.

However, there are close to 600 antigens other than A, B and O. So, if a person does not have A, B or O antigen, then blood group is a rare one.

When is a blood group considered rare?
A blood group falls under the rare category when it occurs only once in more than 200 people. This means that the total population of that blood group is less than 1 per cent of the entire blood population. In fact, some blood groups occur only in 20 or so people.

Naming rare blood groups:
Usually negative blood groups, that is, the blood groups that lack the Rh protein are rare. The rarest blood group in this category is AB-. However, with blood groups that occur only in a handful of people like K- or H-, naming the blood type becomes a problem. Such rare blood groups are either named after the first patient who exhibited this blood group, like teh Duffy blood group, or the place where it was discovered, like the Bombay blood group.

Ethnicity and rare blood groups:
It has been observed that certain minority ethnic groups are prone to having a certain rare blood group. For example, the Bombay blood group is found in a ancient tribal community that lived in and around the modern city of Mumbai. This pattern helps experts track the rare blood groups and their origins carefully.

What if you have a rare blood group?
Ideally, you should get yourself registered in a blood bank under your blood group. This helps in case of an accident or surgery, as the bank is able to provide you blood required for transfusion if required. Small ethnic groups should donate blood to build up the bank reserves of blood from rare types. Some people store their own blood for emergency requirement. Either ways, you need keep a stock of your blood for medical emergencies.
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