Stanford Blood Center (SBC) has been asked by a sister blood center in Florida to help support a two-year-old girl with an extremely rare blood type. Zanaib has a form of cancer that has required several rounds of chemotherapy and a bone marrow transplant. She now requires a rare type of blood that is negative for a red cell antigen called Inb (Indian b) to prevent severe transfusion complications.
Blood that is negative for the Inb antigen is extraordinarily difficult to find and is primarily found in donors of South Asian descent. So far, only two donors have been located nationwide, so our sister blood center has asked for our help in expanding the search given the large number of South Asian donors in the Bay Area.
We are reaching out to you today to ask for your help.
If you are of South Asian descent (such as Pakistani and Indian), and have blood type A-, A+, O- or O+, please make an appointment to donate blood as soon as possible. Only 4% or less of the South Asian population may have this rare antigen type; so, if possible, please encourage a friend or family member to make an appointment to donate, too. You’ll help increase the chances of finding a match for Zanaib.
If you haven’t donated with us in the last year, or if this is your first donation with Stanford Blood Center, we strongly encourage that you give us a call to make your appointment at (888) 723-7831, so that we can help to determine your eligibility to donate blood.
Please note that donors must be at least 18 years of age (16- and 17-year-olds may donate blood with a parent/guardian’s consent), and must not have travelled to a malaria-endemic country (such as India and other countries in South Asia) in the least three months. Donors who were previously residents of a malaria-endemic region must have lived in the US or another non-endemic country for three consecutive years before becoming eligible to donate. Information on general eligibility can be found at stanfordbloodcenter.org/eligibility.
One final note — While we wish we could follow up with every donor to let them know if they are a match for this patient, it is unlikely that we will be able to directly contact every donor. However, if you are a match for Zanaib, you may be contacted as needed going forward to help support her recovery, as she will need multiple transfusions in the coming months.
Remember… even if your blood is not a match, it may still be used to provide a life-saving transfusion to a patient at a local Bay Area hospital. Please make your appointment today by calling (888) 723-7831 or visiting sbcdonor.org.