In the course of my research on RH negative patients particulaly women, i found out that during pregnacy there is the danger of the mother’s body producing anti-bodies that automatically fights the baby’s cells thus resulting in abortion or death of foetus on delivery. however, i found out that with the introduction of Rhogam injection which can be applied twice; at 28 weeks and with in 72 hours after delivery this can be prevented.
So my question is: is it advicable to take the injection after 28 weeks? is it safe for the baby if taken? and what are the possible side effects? Thank you.
F from Lagos
The use of Rhogam as you rightly pointed out is to prevent the development of blood-cell-destroying antibodies in a Rhesus D Positive baby born to a Rhesus D negative mother. This destruction of red blood cells will occur in the baby of a previously sensitized woman (i.e. a woman who is Rhesus D negative and has been previously exposed to Rhesus D positive bloods cells either from a previous delivery or abortion). Rhogam is used to prevent this sensitization.
So to answer your questions:
- Yes the injection is taken around 28-29weeks together with within 72 hours following delivery of a Rhesus D positive baby.
- Rhogam has been in use for over 40 years and has not been show to be harmful to babies.
- Major side effects are rare and are usually due to an allergic reaction to the drug. These serious side effects include:
- fever, chills, or shaking;
- urinating less than normal;
- a change in color of urine;
- body swellings: lips, eyelids, hands, feet, or ankles;
- shortness of breath.
Less serious side effects may include:
- muscle aches or pains;
- feeling tired or light-headed;
- nausea, vomiting; or
- pain or tenderness where the injection is given
Wish you a safe delivery.