Prevalence of Rh Phenotypes among Blood Donors in Kano, Nigeria
Background: The Rh antigens have been reported to cause acute and delayed haemolytic transfusion reactions apart from the dreadful Haemolytic Disease of the Newborn. The aim of this study was determine the prevalence of Rh phenotypes that would serve as a baseline data towards provision of safe blood transfusion in the region.
Methodology: Consecutive blood samples of donors donating at the Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital donor bay were tested with potent commercially prepared Rh antisera (anti E, anti e, anti C, anti c and anti D). Typing was carried out by mixing one drop of 2% red cell suspension to one drops of the respective antisera (D,C,E,c,e) in tubes and incubated at 370C for 1 hr, after which the contents of the tube were mixed, centrifuged and agglutination was look for both visually and microscopically. The results were analysed using the computer statistical analytical software and presented as frequencies and percentages.
Result: One hundred and three samples were screened each with the five anti sera. The commonest Rh phenotypes were D (97.1%) and e (96.1%), followed by c, E, C at the prevalence of 85.4%, 34% and 28.2% respectively.
Conclusion: Rh D phenotype commonest in our study is similar to reports from previous studies in the country. The e phenotype is commoner than the c phenotype in our environment. The incorporation of testing for the other Rh antigens in addition to the D may help in reducing the incidence of Haemolytic Disease of the Newborn and transfusion reactions in our environment and enhance the appropriate use of the scarce D negative blood for transfusion.
Key Words: Blood donors, Kano, Prevalence, Rh phenotype.