Blood Type May Affect Survival After Heart
MONDAY, Oct. 17 (HealthDay News) -- How well you fare after
coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery may depend on your
blood type, a new study finds.
Patients with AB blood type are 20 percent less likely to die
after heart bypass surgery than those with A, B or O blood types,
Duke University Medical Center researchers found.
Nearly half the population has type O blood and may be at
greater risk for bleeding and blood transfusions after surgery, the
The findings from more than 15,000 patients were scheduled for
presentation Monday at the American Society of Anesthesiologists'
meeting in Chicago.
The reason for the differences in risk could be two proteins in
the blood responsible for clotting, the von Willebrand factor (vWF)
and Factor VIII (FVIII).
The gene that passes on group O is associated with lower levels
of these clotting proteins, explained lead author Dr. Ian J. Welsby
and colleagues in a society news release.
A person's blood type is determined by two genes, one from each
parent. People with type O blood have two O genes. Some patients
have one A or B gene and one O gene (AO and BO), which confer
medium levels of the clotting proteins. People with AB blood type
have no O genes and the highest level of clotting proteins.
This study found that patients with AB blood have the lowest
risk for bleeding after CABG surgery, but further investigation is
needed to determine the order of risk for patients with other blood
types and whether boosting their vWF levels will improve their
outcomes after heart surgery, the researchers said.
Research presented at meetings should be considered preliminary
until published in a peer-reviewed medical journal, experts
The U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute has more
coronary artery bypass graft surgery.
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