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MelCthefirst
11-16-2005, 06:51 PM
I haven't given blood for years as apparently, it is too hard to get out of me, or at least it doesn't flow fast enough to fill up a bag easily.
Anyway, I still have the little card they gave me with my blood type on it, that would have got stamped every time I gave blood.
The blood type reads: A RH D Positive, Kell Positive.
Does this mean, more generally speaking, I'm an 'A'?
I have always assumed this, but now I'm not so sure.

MelCthefirst
11-16-2005, 06:57 PM
or is that A+ (because of the RH positive)?

FatBaldGuy
11-16-2005, 08:31 PM
or is that A+ (because of the RH positive)?
Both are correct. Your blood type is A, and the RH factor makes it A Positive, or A+.

KarlGauss
11-16-2005, 09:00 PM
Just to (possibly) clarify two points:

1. The 'D' in Rh D+ is what makes someone Rh +. There are other Rh antigens as well (http://www.bloodjournal.org/cgi/content/full/95/2/375), such as C and E, but these do not influence what we call Rh + or Rh -. That's based only on the D antigen be present or not.

2. Kell is a fairly common antigen, one of many, many lurking behind the scenes. Their importance resides in the fact that if, say, you are Kell negative and receive Kell positive blood, you may well develop antibodies to Kell. So, the next time you get a transfusion, if the donor blood is Kell positive blood, you may develop a transfusion reaction.

Antigen
11-16-2005, 09:09 PM
2. Kell is a fairly common antigen, one of many, many lurking behind the scenes. Their importance resides in the fact that if, say, you are Kell negative and receive Kell positive blood, you may well develop antibodies to Kell. So, the next time you get a transfusion, if the donor blood is Kell positive blood, you may develop a transfusion reaction.

All true, except that he's Kell positive. So he can receive either Kell negative or Kell positive blood without fear of a Kell-related transfusion reaction.

Unless you were speaking in the general sense, in which case, never mind.

The Kell antigen is fairly rare, though, only occurring in about 10% of people. It's not usually typed for*, so if it's on your card, chances are they were testing your blood for compatibility with someone who needed a transfusion. The crossmatch didn't work, because they had an anti-Kell antibody and you have the Kell antigen on your cells, making them react. So, they discovered that you're Kell-positive through that, and stuck that on your file to save them from having the same thing happen next time. If a patient needs Kell-negative blood, they won't even test yours for compatibility.

* This is true in Canada, anyway.

MelCthefirst
11-17-2005, 01:08 PM
Thanks guys. The Kell stuff is interesting - I think it must have been standard procedure to test for it (this is going back a few years now) because I was one of many giving blood on that day.
And BTW I'm a girl.