Health Care

Toddler with rare blood type sparks worldwide search for donors

Toddler with rare blood type sparks worldwide search for donors”

A worldwide search is under way to find specific donors with a rare blood type who could help save a two-year-old girl with an aggressive cancer.

Additional donors are still needed, OneBlood says, as Zainab will need blood transfusions for the foreseeable future.

OneBlood says that people who are likely to be a match for Zainab are people of Pakistani, Indian, or Iranian descent. Zainab Mughal, who has neuroblastoma and requires life-saving transfusions, is missing the "Indian B" antigen in her blood due to a genetic mutation.

Zainab Mughal, two (left and right), from South Florida, was diagnosed with neuroblastoma - a cancer of the nerve cells - in October.

Zainab's donor must also have an "O" or "A" blood type.

According to the family and her doctors, the Neuroblastoma is believed to be growing in her abdomen for about 10 months now.

According to St Jude Children's Research Hospital, neuroblastoma accounts for seven to 10 percent of childhood cancers.

Mughal said his daughter's diagnosis was "the worst thing" they could have expected, until doctors discovered another problem. Around 800 new cases are diagnosed in the USA every year.

Zainab's blood is extremely rare because she is missing a common antigen that most people carry on their red blood cells. This is the first time OneBlood has ever received an global donor for a local patient. "The possibility of us finding a compatible donor for this little girl within the right ethnic group is less than 4 percent". This means that both the parents of the donors must be from Pakistan, India or Iran and the blood type should be either "O" or "A". And more than 1,000 people who are of Iranian, Indian or Pakistani descent have donated blood to be tested, Forbes said.

Because of the requirements needed to be met, OneBlood chose to go worldwide with its search in hopes of finding 7-10 donors to help over the course of Zainab's treatment.

'We need to find more.It's a humble request, and I request it from my heart, ' said Raheel Mughal said in the video. "My daughter's life very much depends on the blood".



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