Monday, September 08, 2014

Prenatal Rhogam: A Complicated Choice

It is well known that mother and baby have two distinct blood systems.  Mother and baby often have two different blood types depending upon genetic contributions made by both mother and father.  These two blood systems do not mix.  The placenta allows nutritional components and hormones to enter the blood stream of the fetus, and of course, any drugs introduced into the mother.  But the two blood systems do not mix.

For thousands of years, mothers have given birth unassisted by medical technology.  There was never a problem with blood incompatability.  Now, in this new age of medical intervention, including surgical abortion, prenatal testing such as amniocentesis and chorionic villus sampling, and giving birth in hospitals where procedures such as cord traction and cesarean section practically insure there will be some kind of blood mixing,  suddenly blood incompatabilities between mother and child have been discovered.

In 13% of the population, the mother happens to be Rh- and the father Rh+.  This is not an emergency in and of itself.  In the 1970's an inoculation was developed, made from the blood of Rh- mothers.  This substance was to be injected into mothers to immunize them against the blood of their babies.  When a mother gives birth naturally, without medical intervention, there is little risk of the mother and baby's blood supply mixing.  They are two separate systems.  But in a system of "managed" birth, where there are often interventions which can mix the blood supply, a case for this inoculation seems to have developed.  You see, when you have amniocentesis or chorionic villus sampling, your womb is being invaded by a sharp tool which CAN cause bleeding.  When a woman has abortions, the blood of the fetus can be mixed with her own.  When a woman has a cesarean section, internal fetal monitoring, cord traction to remove the placenta, or scraping of the uterus to remove placenta pieces, this mixing can occur.  These circumstances did not exist years ago.  These kind of procedures were never performed.  So the Rh- problem is a problem that has largely been created by modern medicine and its birth interventions.

According to the logic(?) of this, just as a person who is given blood that is the wrong type will have a reaction to that blood, the woman whose blood mixes with that of her child will have a reaction.  Her body will sense the foreign blood and will make antibodies to destroy any blood cells like the ones detected.  In other words, it makes antibodies to kill the blood of any future babies with that blood type.

The best way to avoid blood mixing is to have a home birth with no medical interference of any kind.  If you allow your placenta to be expelled naturally, you will probably have a more heavy blood flow for a longer period of time in order to cleanse the uterus.  At this time, any placenta pieces which may have been retained will be expelled.  There is no need to invade and violate the inner sanctum of the uterus.

Reading the package insert on Rhogam is a very educational experience.  There are many risks to taking the shot, including anaphalactic shock.  Damage to the immune system can also be permanent.  Rhogam is made from human blood products which can harbor viruses that cannot be screened out.  With HIV and other harmful viruses out there, it is outrageous to think of exposing yourself to potential risk of getting it from a Rhogam shot.  It also is preserved in a mercury derivative, an extremely dangerous substance even in small quantities.  The package insert also says there are risks to the immune system of the mother or child if they have allergies.  Who among us doesn't have an allergy to something?

There has been some research done which suggests that if one does NOT have amniocentesis or cesarean section, and births without cutting the cord until the placenta has delivered itself with no cord traction or pulling, this is the best way to prevent blood contamination.

Most physicians will tell you that you can never change your Rh- status.  But there are some women who have done it by changing their diets and taking certain herbs.  The women in question were known to be Rh- and when they went to the doctor for a routine test, it was found that they were suddenly Rh+.  The doctor is the one that discovered this.  It is not known how long it took for this change to occur, but the women were following blood cleansing procedures such as:

1.  Changing their diet and eliminating all sugar, white flour, caffeine, sodas,
     processed foods, and alcohol.
2.  Using a lower bowel tonic and occasional colonics to keep the bowel clear.
3.  Use of herbs to cleanse the blood such as:
     A.  Periwinkle
     B.  Red Raspberry Leaf Tea
     C.  A tea made from red clover blossoms, chaparral, licorice root, poke root,
          peach bark, Oregon grape root, stillingia, cascara sagrada, sarsparilla,
          prickly ash bark, burdock root, and buckthorn bark.
     D.  A few capsules of:  goldenseal root, blessed thistle, cayenne, cramp bark,
          false unicorn root, ginger, red raspberry leaves, squaw vine and uva ursi.
          And a few capsules of:  black cohosh, sarsparilla, ginseng, licorice, false
          unicorn, holy thistle and squaw vine.
4.  Also, included in the diet blood builders, such as grape juice, molasses, beets,
     and others.

I am simply sharing all this with you because I believe it is dangerous to take the Rhogam shot.  If you are  tested and are told you need the shot, please do not rush into this decision.  I believe that you have other options besides permanently damaging your immune system.  They used to administer the shot within 72 hours after birth.  Now, they want to administer it to all pregnant women who are Rh- without even testing them to see if they need it.  I would not accept the shot without testing to see if I needed it.  And if they said I did need it, I would do everything in my power to avoid it.  Of course, if you refuse the shot, your doctor may refuse to attend your birth.  But there are other options for birth besides physician attended birth.  Also, the hospital emergency room and the doctor on call on the labor and delivery floor are required to give you care if you show up.

What is the bottom line in all this?  As we take a step further in technological advancement, we are getting farther and farther away from trust in our bodies, farther from the knowledge of how to have safe and healthy birth, and closer to permanently endangering our health and the health of our children.  We do not know the effect these substances will have on the reproductive health of the children we carry while taking these drugs.  But we do know that it is possible to have a health pregnancy and birth without taking the Rhogam shot.  I am personally aquainted with women who have not taken the shot, and have suffered no ill effects.

Exercise your right of informed choice.  Do your own research, and don't be pushed one way or the other.  Consult your inner wisdom, and only do what feels right to you.       

Polly's Birth Book - Polly Block

This is the book from which the above information came. She talks about the Rh- women who changed their RH status and the diet they followed.  

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