I had a fetal to maternal hemorrhage with my first baby that caused me to develop anti-K and anti-E antibodies. During my second pregnancy we had weekly MCA dopplers. At 20 weeks, we did the free cell DNA test through the Sanquin lab in the Netherlands. Tests showed that our little boy was negative for both the K and E antigens. I was relieved to know what I was up against. My insurance wouldn’t cover the test because it’s not FDA approved, however I was able to pay for it using my health savings account (HSA). Our pregnancy was normal and healthy. He was Coombs negative at birth! We were so lucky!
Do you have any advice or encouragement for families dealing with HDFN?
I would really really encourage women to do the cell free DNA test. That way you at least know what you’re dealing with.
If you could say something to health care providers everywhere, what would it be?
When you are unfamiliar with sensitized pregnancy, please refer patients to a MFM who specializes in this disease and do not try to manage it alone. Secondly, please always listen to your patients. If your patient is concerned or has a bad feeling, err on the side of caution – it’s not worth risking a baby’s life.
If you could ask the scientific community to do or to research something, what would it be?
I would ask for more research on getting the free cell DNA test for all antibodies in the US. This would make things so much easier for patients and their doctors.