Anti-D(rh) immunoglobulin is a human antibody used to prevent an immune response in patients without rhesus factor (RhD negative) who have been exposed to rhesus factor (RhD positive) blood during pregnancy or blood transfusions. It is administered by intramuscular or intravenous injection and is used to prevent an immunological condition known as Rh incompatibility (or Rh incompatibility, especially in newborns). If left untreated, this incompatibility leads to the destruction of the child's red blood cells. This condition is also known as hemolyticus neonatorum. Anti-D immunoglobulins are administered either as an IV solution or directly as a prefilled syringe.
Rhesus factor was discovered and named by Karl Landsteiner and Alexander Wiener in 1937. Shortly thereafter, it was discovered that people without rhesus could develop immunity to rhesus blood cells. In the 1950s, blood exchange transfusions achieved initial success in the treatment of haemolyticus neonatorum. In 1968, prophylactic therapy with immunoglobulins (anti-D prophylaxis) was first approved and is still commonly used today.