I was always curious if it was possible to know about my blood type, without having to visit a nearby clinic or hospital.
I assume that everyone wants to know about their blood type, in case there is a situation where people have to donate their blood for transfusions. You may already know that it is important for people to have the same blood type, to make the transfusion safe.
Blood types are different from one another because of the antigens which are present on the surface of their cells. To know the blood type, you need to identify these antigens. One way is to conduct a simple test, where you have different reagents in three test tubes. Each of these tubes will have the Rh, B, and A antibodies. Once you collect the blood, you need to add them to all the test tubes.
After allowing them to mix, find out if there is any agglutination or clumping in the test tubes. Agglutination is a sign that your blood reacted with the reagent, due to the presence of a particular antibody. The next step is to look at the test tubes with A and B antibodies, to look for agglutination. For example, if your blood reacted to A, it is a sign that you have A antigens. As a result of this, your blood type falls into group A. Now, you need to check for agglutination in the Rh test tube. Let’s assume there is an agglutination, which indicates that you have Rh+. When you combine all this data, you can see that your blood group is B+. Now, if you find agglutination in A and B test tubes, then you fall under the AB blood group. Similarly, if there isn’t any sign of reaction in test tube A or B, your blood group is O.
I find it quite easy to follow this simple test to know about my blood group. You can also purchase a blood type test kit from an online store. All you need to do is drop about one to four drops of your blood on the strip. As I explained earlier, the results you see depend on agglutination.
If you are wondering why the blood agglutinates, I have a simple explanation. Agglutination takes place because your blood matches the antibodies, due to which you see a reaction. For example, B antibodies will combine with the B antigens, forming a clump. Similarly, the B antigens attach to the Rh antibodies.
You also get to know about your blood type, if you go to donate your blood. Although there is genotype blood testing, it isn’t necessary to undergo one to know about your blood group. The interesting thing about genotype blood testing is that medical professionals will use it in the future. For example, it is possible that this type of testing can help prevent hemolytic disease. Medical professionals will also use this test to prevent any confusion during newborn and maternal care.