Hemolytic disease of the fetus and newborn

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An alloimmune condition that develops in a fetus or newborn as a result of the incompatibility in the blood group of the mother and her offspring.


For example, the mother is rH- while the fetus is rH+. When the antibodies of the rH- mother enter fetal circulation the antibodies attack the red blood cells of the rH+ fetus, resulting to hemolysis and anemia in fetus. Symptoms include jaundice, anemia, enlarged liver and spleen.

Abbreviation: HDFN


See also: Rhesus disease, ABO hemolytic disease of the newborn