Wednesday, June 16, 2010


Bombay ‘Oh’: Man found to have rare blood group. Only 180 People Have This Blood Group In Country. One of the rarest blood groups has surfaced in the city — a father who was donating blood to his son was found to be Bombay ‘Oh’ Phenotype. And BGS Global Hospital, which along with many other hospitals is observing World Blood Donor Day on Monday, added a new donor to its Rare Blood Group Registry.

Called the Bombay Phenotype Group — because the first such case was found in Bombay — its incidence is 0.0004% of the global population.Incidentally, motivating youngsters to donate blood is the theme of this year: ‘New blood for the world’. Blood donation camps will be organized on Monday at e4e Business solutions India on Hosur road around 12 noon and at Microsoft India GTSC in association with Lions Blood Bank.


Annappa Hanumanthappa, 42, who hails from Davanagere, was identified to have Bombay Phenotype Group when he came forward to donate blood for his son Darshan, 7, who is undergoing treatment for a cardiac problem at the hospital. According to BGS Global Hospital head of department of transfusion medicine, Annapurna Ramesh, “There are a total of 179 people known to have Bombay Phenotype Blood group in India, and this identification makes Annappa the 180th person with this blood group.’’


This blood group may be commonly mistaken as ‘O’ and many a time, not identified at all if proper blood grouping or testing practices are not followed. During routine grouping conducted at the hospital’s blood bank, Annappa’s blood group showed up as O, with no reaction to Anti-A and Anti-B antibodies.

When reverse grouping was performed, it showed agglutination with O cells, proving he had the rare Bombay ‘Oh’ Phenotype blood. Repeated testing was done as it is important to perform reverse grouping or serum grouping to detect the Bombay Blood group. People of this group can donate and receive blood only among those with the same blood group. If a Bombay Blood Group recipient is not given blood from a Bombay Blood Group person, it can lead to a haemolytic transfusion reaction, which can be fatal. BGS Hospitals vice chairman Dr N K Venkataramana said: “At times when this rare blood group is required for surgeries, blood from blood banks in other cities has to be brought, or donors from other locations have to travel to the hospital where blood is required.” BGS Global Hospital’s Rare Blood Group Registry, instituted two years ago with the aim to help those in need of rare blood types, has around 100 voluntary donors, including three donors of Bombay Phenotype. Annappa has also happily agreed to be a voluntary donor.


Bombay Phenotype is one of the rarest blood groups: one in every 17,600 people in India or one in every 25,000 people in the world has this group. “If one is O group, make sure it is not Bombay Blood group. A person with Bombay Phenotype should always be cautious not to receive any other blood type. He should always carry an identity card prominently displaying his blood group. In developed countries, one may opt to preserve a few units of blood by cryopreservation for about 10 years, to be used during an emergency. However, with facilities in India, blood can be preserved only for 45 days,” said Annapurna.  BGS Global Hospital’s Rare Blood Group Registry helpline is 2625 5654.


  1. Must be above 18 years of age.
  2. Donor should not be underweight — more than 45-50 kg is fine Should not be suffering from infections such as a cold or flu or chronic diseases (diabetes/cancer etc).
  3. Should not have taken any intoxicating drugs, orally or otherwise.
  4. Should not have blood pressure or low blood pressure.
  5. Pregnant or menstruating women not eligible to donate.
  6. It takes around 24 hours for your body to replenish the volume of blood, which is usually 350-400 ml (1 unit), and haemoglobin level is usually replenished within 7-10 days.

Source: TOI

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