Connection Between Blood Type and Heart Health

The Harvard School of Public Health states that heart disease may be linked to blood type. Human blood antigens are glycoproteins and glycolipids are expressed on the surface of red blood cells and variety of human tissue including epithelium, sensory neurons, platelets, and vascular endothelium. It is also been predicted that ABO blood type increases the risk of cardiovascular disease.

The connection between blood type and heart health has always been curious. Certain blood types associated with heart health is still something that researchers are looking for.

The blood group is classified into four major types mainly A, AB, B, and O which are classified based on the presence and absence of antigens on red blood cells. Apart from the presence of A, B antigens another antigen called Rh antigen is also present in red blood cells based on it we call it positive or negative.

Senior author Lu Qi, an assistant professor in the Department of Nutrition found that people with blood types A, B, and AB have a higher risk of developing coronary heart disease compared to that with blood types O. Also, people with blood groups A and B tend to have a higher risk of blood clots.

According to American Heart Association, researchers found that compared to people with O blood type, those with types A and B have an 8% higher risk of heart attack and a 10% increased heart failure. The study also found that people in the same groups are 51% more likely to develop deep vein thrombosis and 47% more likely to develop pulmonary embolism. Due to these severe blood clotting disorders the chance of developing heart failure greatly increases.

It is not under our control to change the blood type so all these researches may help physicians to better understand heart health. Along with knowing the blood type, it’s equally important to be aware of blood pressure and cholesterol number.

The researchers reasons that the increased risk of heart disease in A and AB blood group people may be due to inflammation. The protein present in A and B blood groups thickens the walls of veins and arteries thus increasing the incidence of heart disease.

On the other hand, the showed that while people with O-type blood group reports a slightly lower risk of heart disease, they are more susceptible to a hemorrhaging and bleeding disorder. This phenomenon is more common in women after childbirth. This is due postpartum blood loss which increases the risk in women. AB blood types have increased in cognitive impairment when compared with O.

The only thing one should do to maintain a healthy heart is to follow a healthy lifestyle, avoid smoking and drinking, exercise daily, and undergo timely check-ups. Also, the one with a family history of heart disease should take more care and undergo timely consultation with cardiologists and physicians.


Ritika Gupta

Ritika Gupta is an MPharm. graduate who is keen on spreading awareness about various unexplored medical fields through her writings.

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