Lab Med Online.  2017 Jul;7(3):89-93. 10.3343/lmo.2017.7.3.89.

Transfusion Strategy of RhD-negative/variant Patients in the Korean Population

  • 1Department of Laboratory Medicine, Kyung Hee University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Department of Laboratory Medicine and Genetics, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
  • 3Central Blood Laboratory Center, Korean Red Cross, Seoul, Korea.
  • 4The Division of Human Blood Safety Surveillance, Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Cheongwon, Korea.


The prevalence of RhD-negative individuals in the Korean population is approximately 0.15-0.30% and the supply of RhD-negative blood often faces potential shortage. Furthermore, 15-17% of serologically RhD-negative Korean individuals were revealed to be DEL variants and should be treated as RhD-positive when being considered as blood donors. This change is expected to result in a further shortage of RhD-negative blood supply, whereas surplus DEL variant blood stock is created. Therefore, it is now required to amend blood donation and supply policies, and transfusion strategies. In this review, a new transfusion strategy for patients with RhD-negative or variant blood in Korea is discussed, with particular interest in women of child-bearing age, patients with anti-D, and Asia type DEL (c.1227G>A) variants.


RHD; DEL; Transfusion; Genotyping
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