Health > Types Of Blood Group and What They Mean
7th Jul 2021

Types Of Blood Group and What They Mean

For everyone, knowing their blood type is vital in a medical emergency. The blood group can also provide updates about current health. Blood types are determined by the existence or lack of certain antigens that can affect the immune response if they are unfamiliar to the body. Some antigens can target a person’s immunity to damage the transfused blood, therefore careful blood typing and cross-matching are crucial for safe blood transfusions. While everyone’s blood is made up of some basic factors, there are different blood groups that exist.

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How Many Types of Blood Groups?

There are four key blood types determined by the lack or presence of two antigens that include A and B – in red blood cells. Apart from A and B antigens, there is an Rh factor – a protein that can be present or absent, forming around 8 common blood types, including  A+, A-, B+, B-, O+, O-, AB+, and AB-.

Here is everything you need to know on how many blood groups are there and what are their meanings.

Blood Group – Meaning

A blood group or type is a categorization of blood, depending on the lack or presence of antibodies and hereditary antigenic essences in red blood cells or RBCs. The major components of blood include:

•    White blood cells – important for the immune system
•    Red blood cells – essential for carrying oxygen throughout the body
•    Platelets – helps in clotting
•    Plasma – A yellowish fluid having proteins and salts

The blood type will be based on which antigens are found on the surface of the RBCs.

Blood Group – Importance

Blood types are crucial to know in case of blood transfusion, and diverse blood groups may also have effects on certain diseases. Blood mixed-up diverse groups can lead to clumps, which can be a serious condition.  This is because the individual getting the blood transfusion has antibodies that can clash with the donor’s blood cells, leading to a toxic reaction. For a safe and successful blood transfusion, it is vital for the recipient and donor to have the same blood groups.

How Many Blood Types are there?

We have already mentioned how many types of blood groups are there in the human body. Mentioned below are some important points about these 8 blood groups.

A +

How many different blood types are there? The first in the list is the A positive – a very common blood type. A person with this blood type can donate blood to those who have A positive or AB positive blood types.

A –

People with A- blood type can give blood to those with A or AB blood type. However, people with the A negative can only get blood from A- or O- blood types.

B +

The third in the list of how many types of blood group, is B+. This blood type can be given to both B+ and AB+.

B –

How many blood types? B- is one of the rarest blood types. Someone with this blood group can donate blood to anyone with B or AB blood type.

AB +

AB positive blood has both A and B antigens in RBCs, thus there are no antigens found in the plasma. Patients with this blood type can get any type of plasma or blood.

AB –

It is also a rare blood group and patients with AB- blood group can get red blood cells from those with all negative blood groups.

O +

One of the most common blood groups, O positive is not universally compatible with all blood groups. However, they can be given to those with all positive groups (A+, B+, O+, AB+).

O –

It is the universal blood group. Someone having O negative blood can donate blood to any patient with any blood group. It is the most used blood type in case of emergency, trauma, and surgery, and any condition when the blood group is unknown. However, the O negative blood group can only receive O negative blood.

Blood Type – Testing

How many types of blood groups are present? Now you know about the types, but to know the exact group, you need a blood test. A blood test can assess the blood group of a person. In this process, a lab technician or healthcare provider will take a blood sample from the person’s arm. Later, the blood is mixed with three diverse substances to check how they react. Each of these substances contains antibodies for the A and B or Rh factors.

For a successful blood transfusion, a person’s blood type must be compatible with the blood group of the donor to avoid complications.

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