Mother and Fetus Blood

by ninjaturtle 14 Replies latest watchtower medical

  • ninjaturtle

    Although I have serious reservations regarding the views on blood that Jw's have, I would like to clarify something with a person who keeps ignorantly insisting that the blood between a mother and fetus are naturally transfused within the womb. Can someone help me to disprove that? Any references from the Wt library would be best.


  • simplesally

    Sorry, can't help you one bit!! And here's why:

    Blood from the mother enters the fetus through the vein in the umbilical cord. It goes to the liver and splits into three branches. The blood then reaches the inferior vena cava, a major vein connected to the heart.

    Inside the fetal heart:

    Blood enters the right atrium, the chamber on the upper right side of the heart. Most of the blood flows to the left side through a special fetal opening between the left and right atria, called the foramen ovale.
    Blood then passes into the left ventricle (lower chamber of the heart) and then to the aorta, (the large artery coming from the heart).

    From the aorta, blood is sent to the head and upper extremities. After circulating there, the blood returns to the right atrium of the heart through the superior vena cava.

    About one-third of the blood entering the right atrium does not flow through the foramen ovale, but, instead, stays in the right side of the heart, eventually flowing into the pulmonary artery.

  • Joyzabel
  • Scully

    Normally, maternal and fetal blood do NOT mix. The exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide occurs in the placenta via differentials in the partial pressures of the gases. Nutrients and waste products cross the placental membranes in the same manner. Some immunoglobulins transfer from mother to fetus. Drugs also cross the placental barrier, with varying permeability, depending on their molecular weight (alcohol passes quite readily because of its low MW, while insulin, which is a much larger and more complex molecule with a relatively high MW, does not tend to effect the fetus the way alcohol does).

    In the case of placental abruption (the placenta becomes partially detached from the uterine wall), placenta previa (where the placenta is located at the lower part of the uterus, covering the opening) the possibility exists that maternal and fetal blood will mingle. Because the blood of each individual is unique, both mother and baby will likely produce antibodies to the others' blood. In the case of the Rh sensitized woman (Rh negative mother, bearing Rh positive baby), antibodies produced as a result of the baby's blood coming in contact with the mother's blood during delivery can seriously compromise future pregnancies. The antibodies she produces "attack" the Rh positive blood cells of subsequent children - resulting in the "blue baby" syndrome, also known as erythroblastosis fetalis or hemolytic disease of the newborn.

    Some twin pregnancies where there is a shared placenta (as is usually the case with identical twins) there occurs a phenomenon known as "twin to twin transfusion". Blood from one twin is shunted to the other, resulting in circulatory overload and poor waste elimination from the "recipient" twin, and poor growth and development of the "donor" twin. Because the twins are identical, and have identical blood, the danger of them developing antibodies to one another is absent; however these babies are usually extremely sick and are often delivered preterm in order to minimize the danger of this condition and initiate treatment as soon as possible.

    Love, Scully RN
    Maternal Newborn Care

  • hawkaw

    Scully is bang on with respect to whole blood and the placential barrier.

    However, I DISAGREE with Scully's comments on fetuses sharing whole blood. Fetuses in monochorionic pregnancies do share whole blood because they have one placenta. The blood systems of both fetuses connect at the placenta either by artery to artery, vein to vein or artery to vein. In a large majority of these gestations (88 percent), the fetuses will develop WITHOUT Twin to Twin Transfusion (TTT) syndrome. However, in 12 percent of the these cases, a condition called twin to twin transfusion syndrome develops (where one fetus gets more blood from the other fetus). Some cases are mild while a lot of other cases can cause the death of one of the fetuses. Research has also noted that the MORE artery and vein connections between the two (or more) fetuses, TTT syndome is LESS likely to occur because there are different ways for the blood to offset from one fetus to the other.

    Please also be aware that fetal nucleated red blood cells and of course white blood cells DO pass the placential barrier. In fact fetal nucleated red blood cells live more than 25 years in the maternal (mother's) blood.

    I urge you to joy2bfree's url that he/she provided. In that thread I provide 2 urls to click on (I have also provided these urls below my name on this thread). One deals with an AJWRB article on the crossing of these cells and the second article deals with the natural transfer of whole blood between two individuals (fetuses). Also look at the other information provided by AJWRB.

    While going at this, recall the Questions From Readers section in the Watchtower magazines of June 1, 1990 and June 15, 2000. The QFR for June 1, 1990 clearly reminds the readers that whole blood does not naturally transfer between individuals. The Watchtower also indicates that researchers have proved albumin crosses the barrier but red blood cells and other cellular elements of blood DO NOT cross the barrier. However, once you read the above scientific research, you find out red and white blood cells do naturally pass and the Watchtower's statements are NOT true. Also when it clicks in your head that fetuses are individuals (based on Watchtower doctrine) then monchorionic pregnancies show a way for one individual to naturally transfer whole blood to another proving the Watchtower's statements are false.

    Think about this. A group that touts a Hospital Information Service that reviews more than 4,000 medical journals and has doctors on staff tells an outright lie about their doctrine. A doctrine that allows for the needless death of little children who need a life saving blood transfusion.


    Whole blood transfer



    Red Blood cell and White Blood cell transfer


  • simplesally

    Well, I didn't make up my post.....its from the Cincinnati Children's Medical Center.

    Go read it.....

  • Scully


    We don't disagree at all.

    I began my comments regarding twin-to-twin transfusion with the qualifier: "Some twin pregnancies where there is a shared placenta..." and I think the statistic you brought to the discussion of 12 percent of monochorionic twin pregnancies having the risk of twin-to-twin transfusion is accurately reflected in the term "some".

    As for "sharing whole blood", it was not my intent to comment on that at all. Considering that the fetuses are genetically identical, their blood is also genetically identical. How does one determine which blood cells belong to Twin #1, and which ones belong to Twin #2?

    I agree with what you've shared about the sharing of blood between the two fetuses, but I was pointing to the fact that in the worst case scenario, it's harmful to both babies, but the risk is not from sharing the blood per se, it comes from a disparity in the way the shared blood is distributed between the fetuses.

    Love, Scully

  • SixofNine

    Scully or Hawk, could you comment on the article that Simple Sally posted, please?

    Am I missing something, is the article wrong, is it just written sloppily?

  • Scully


    Blood from the mother does NOT enter the fetus. The fetus produces its own blood supply which is genetically unique. Fetal circulation and maternal circulation have the common component of the placenta, which is a kind of interface between them, where the exchange of waste and nutrients, oxygen and carbon dioxide occur, through diffusion, osmosis and differentials in gaseous partial pressures. Under normal circumstances, fetal and maternal blood supplies do NOT mingle.

    I think the article is oversimplifying things for the purpose of the audience it could be addressing. It's easier for young pregnant ladies (who may still be in high school) to understand how what they eat, drink, smoke, toke, inject, snort etc. into their bodies impacts on their unborn offspring if it is put to them in these terms.

    Love, Scully

  • SixofNine

    "Blood from the mother does NOT enter the fetus. "

    I didn't think so. So is that web page, put up by a childrens hospital no less, just plain wrong? How could they have possibly gotten it so wrong?

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