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“Sibling’s Blood More Safe,” Groundless. Do not Insist on Family Blood Transfusion

“Sibling’s Blood More Safe,” Groundless. Do not Insist on Family Blood Transfusion

Posted November. 02, 2003 22:48,   


Life and Death of Blood: Blood is produced in the marrow inside the bones, more accurately in the hematosis mother cells in the marrow. Blood consists of globules (hematocytes, leucocytes, and blood platelet) and blood plasma. For blood platelet, the life span ranges from 10 to 14 days and, for hematocytes, around 120 days. Leukocytes live only a day or two except for lymphocytes.

A healthy adult holds 4-6L of blood. It circulates around the blood vessels, carries oxygen, nutrients, and waste materials, and fights viruses and germs that penetrated into the body.

Blood dies in the spleen. They go through a recycling process here as well. The spleen dissolves blood, absorbs amino acids and iron, and sends them out to different organs where they are needed.

Is family blood more safe?: Would family blood be safer? A doctor of Laboratory Medicine said, “There is no medical proof to support that, and instead it could be worse.” The safest blood is the one that was proved to be clean after passing all the examinations even if it was someone other than a family member.

The reason that family blood could be more dangerous is because they are able to hide their diseases from their family members. It is said that the most AIDS-infected cases result from revealing the fact to their families. In reality, they do not recommend family blood transfusion in medically advanced countries such as the U.S.

Also the case where a wife gets blood transfusion from her husband is not medically recommended. Every blood has its unique antigen. In the hypothetical case where a wife gets a blood transfusion from her husband, a new antigen is coming into her body. The wife’s immunity system produces antibodies from the antigens.

Now suppose the wife gets pregnant. The baby acquires genes from both the mother and the father. Therefore, the baby possesses antigens derived from the father. The problem starts here when the antibody from the mother’s body attacks the antigen. This disease that destroys the baby’s hematocytes is called “Hemolytic Disease of the Newborn.”

Blood, Disease if Overflow: “Polycythemia” is a disease in which blood is being overly produced. Hematosis mother cells that have “experienced” extreme bleeding or a shortage of blood could excessively produce blood violating the law of “1 percent production and 1 percent death everyday.” As the blood increases, so do the problems in blood circulation. In this case, treatment is to drain some blood.

Leukemia is a disease in which leukocytes are overly produced since leukocytes are designed to prevent normal blood cells’ production and growth.

Anemia is a common disease derived from a shortage of hematocytes. Since oxygen transportation runs low, it makes a person out of breath, has a faster heart beat, and exhausted easily. Taking iron pills will help for a simple case. However, if the problem is in the marrow, one needs to go through anti-cancer treatments and marrow transplant.

Also, self-antibody, being produced by it, can kill the hematocytes. In this case, it can destroy not only the blood of its own but also someone else’s as well, so one has to go through treatments to lower the numbers of the self-antibody rather than getting blood transfusion.

Hemophilia is a disease in a body that lacks the “eighth element” that is in charge of coagulation of blood. As a result, bleeding from even from a small cut never stops. It is one of incurable diseases.

Misunderstandings about Blood: If an AB or an O baby is born between an AB and an O, is it out of an “external affair?” Normally the baby in this case would be an A or a B. However, in the case in which any one of the parents has a Cis-AB blood type, the A gene and B gene are inherited at the same time and can produce an AB or an O baby.

Have you heard of “changing blood?” In the 1970s, rich and old people received blood transfusions from young people in the belief of rejuvenation if they replace their blood with a younger one.

The tradition is a long-lasting one, since there is a record that some drank the blood of a young gladiator during the ancient Greek and Roman times. However, doctors say, “If this rumor were to be true, most people getting blood transfusions should have been rejuvenated now since most of the blood donators are military men and students. It is groundless.” A common belief that getting bad blood out of the body is a treatment to a disease is medically unsupported.

Would there be any way to make our blood clear? Doctors say if our body gets healthy, so does our blood. There is a common belief that seaweed soup makes one’s blood clear, but it is best to intake all the various kinds of food and do regular exercise as well as taking rests once in a while. Also, one should avoid food with too much animal fat since it increases fat density in the blood.

(Reference=Ulsan University’s Seoul Asan Hospital Professor of Laboratory Medicine Kwon, Seok-oon & Yonsei University’s Severance Hospital Professor of of Laboratory Medicine Kim, Hyun-ok)