Blood group 0+: chemical and medical characteristics
This is one of the most curious Blood types, due to the fact that it can be donated to everyone.
Probably each and every one of us, at some point in our lives, either by a blood donation or a blood test, has been exposed to this concept: the blood group.
Knowing your blood group is extremely easy; you can ask for this service in a pharmacy where they offer it, or simply for being a blood donor, you will be sent a letter with this information a few days after the donation.
There are different blood groups; in this article we will talk in detail about one of them: blood group 0+.
The discovery of this blood type
For centuries, the functions of blood have been a mystery. Although doctors sensed its great importance and tried to perform numerous blood transfusions in order to treat various diseases, in most cases, this was harmful to the patient, so this medical practice was banned for some time.
It was in 1900 when the German pathologist Karl Landsteiner realized that mixtures between certain bloods were incompatible.
So, investigating further, he discovered the fact that on the surface of red blood cells can have two types of markers (antigens A and B) or no markers at all.. He also discovered the antibodies present in the plasma, which react against these antigens on the red blood cell surfaces.
The 0+ blood group
There are a total of 8 types of blood groups: A-, A+, B-, B+, AB-, AB+, 0- and finally, the 0+ blood group.. Compatibility for giving blood depends on these letters and on being positive (+) or negative (-).
The 0+ blood group is known because it it can give all blood types (A, B, 0) that are Rh (A, B, 0) that are Rh positive, but the 0+ blood group can only receive from 0+ or 0-. Below we will see what it means to be Rh positive, what these letters and number 0 imply, and the reason for compatibilities or not.
Types of blood groups
As the pathologist Karl Landsteiner has already stated, the type of blood group is determined by the markers (marker proteins) or antigens that are present on the surface of the red blood cells, i.e. the red blood cells. These antigens can be A, B, A and B together or simply not have any.
Like all antigens, they react with an antibody that attempts to neutralize them.. People can have antibodies against these antigens in plasma.
The presence or not of antigens in plasma is a determining factor for compatibility when donating or receiving blood. Likewise, positivity (+) or negativity (-) also influences blood compatibility. According to these parameters, we have the following groups and their characteristics:
1. Group A
This is the blood group whose red blood cells have the antigen A on their surface and in the plasma we find Anti-B antibodies.
It is the blood group whose red blood cells present the B antigen on their surface, and in the plasma we find Anti-A antibodies.
This is the blood group whose red blood cells have both A and B antigens on their surface. In the plasma no antibody is found.
Group 0 is the group where no antigens are found. However, the plasma contains Anti-A and Anti-B antibodies..
Positive or negative?
The positive (+) or negative (-) that accompanies the blood group is defined by a factor in the organism called factor D is defined by a factor of the organism called factor D. To have it means to be Rh positive and not to be Rh negative. This factor is present in the blood of 85% of the people, being called Rh positive. The remaining 15% of the population lacks this factor, being Rh negative.
Both the blood group and the Rh positive or not will determine the blood type. For example, a person with no red blood cell antigens will be blood type 0. If he/she also has Anti-A and Anti-B antibodies in plasma, and Rh positive, he/she will be blood group +. Therefore, it will be blood group type 0+.
Compatibility of blood group 0+.
As we have mentioned above, blood group 0+ can give to any group: A, B or AB (as long as it is positive). This is because as there is no group with which anti-0 antigens are manufactured, no one will react against it if blood is received from it..
On the other hand, blood group 0+ can only receive from people with blood group 0+ or 0-, as people with blood group 0+ contain anti-A and anti-B antibodies in their plasma and would react with anything other than 0.
Who can donate?
In practice, not everyone is eligible to give blood.. This depends on many factors, both physiological conditions and parameters, i.e. the individual himself, and circumstantial parameters (exotic travel, contact with people infected with hepatitis, taking certain medications, pregnancy, recent earrings or tattoos, etc...).
As essential parameters, it is considered essential to weigh at least 50 kg to be able to give blood, to be of legal age and to be in a good general state of health. On the other hand, you should avoid giving blood on an empty stomach and give blood within a minimum period of 2 months since the last donation..
In addition, since men have a volemia (total blood volume), they can up to 4 times in the same year and women only 3.
Permanently, blood can never be given in the case of patients with hepatitis B, hepatitis C or HIV, insulin-dependent diabetic patients, insulin-dependent diabetic patients and patients with hepatitis B.insulin-dependent diabetic patients, epileptics (and under current treatment) or other serious diseases.
What happens to the blood that is collected?
This blood obtained through blood donations is used to treat diseases involving anemia, treatment of different types of cancer, treatment of accidents, hemorrhages, burns, organ transplants, surgical interventions, etc.
It is considered that 1 out of every 10 people admitted to a hospital will need blood and that 1 out of every 2 people living in Spain will need blood at some time in their lives. In addition, curiously, only 5% of potential donors donate blood per year, very few.
Once the blood arrives at the transfusion center, it is divided into 3 components: red blood cells (red cells), plasma and platelets and transferred to people according to their needs..
Blood type is not a factor that is statistically equally distributed in society. In Spain, the blood group that takes the lead is A+, with approximately 36% of the population, while AB- only accounts for 0.5%.
The most curious group could be considered the 0-, since it is a universal donor (no one makes antibodies against it and it does not have the D or Rh factor), but it can only receive from itself. can only receive from itself (since it has anti-A and Anti-B antibodies in plasma), and this sometimes generates supply problems in blood banks. So don't hesitate, be generous and donate blood! You will save lives.
- Netter, F. (2019). Atlas of human anatomy. Elsevier Spain.
- E. Hall, John (2016). Compendium Of Medical Physiology. Studentconsult. Elsevier. 13th Edition.
(Updated at Mar 28 / 2023)