Hemophilia: Symptoms, Causes, And Treatments

By ChemistsWorld On 09 Aug 2018

Hemophilia is a kind of rare disorder which involves an abnormal clotting of blood because it lacks sufficient blood-clotting proteins. A person suffering from hemophilia might bleed for a longer duration of time after an injury than other normal individuals if their blood clot was normal. Minor cuts and injuries aren’t a real big problem. It becomes a major concern when there’s a deep bleeding inside a person’s body, especially in the elbows, knees, and ankles. This severe internal bleeding can cause great damage to the tissues and organs and can also prove to be life-threatening in some cases. This article speaks everything about its types, symptoms, causes, and treatments.

The Types of Hemophilia
There are two main types of Hemophilia: Hemophilia A and Hemophilia B.

  • Hemophilia A: It is caused due to the factor VIII deficiency.
  • Hemophilia B: It is caused due to the factor IX deficiency.
  • Hemophilia C: It is caused due to the defective or missing factor XI clotting protein.

The type A and B are almost identical clinically and are associated with constant and severe bleeding the muscles and joints and external or internal bleeding after a surgery or an injury. After a repeated series of bleeding, permanent damage can be caused to the muscles & joints they have been affected, especially the knees, elbows, and ankles. The type C is rarely found at one in every 100,000 individuals. There’s one more type which is quite rare, called Acquired Hemophilia. The patient develops this condition during his/her lifetime and it is not linked with any heritable or genetic cause. This disorder is usually associated with old age and sometimes even complicates pregnancy.

How is Hemophilia inherited?
Generally, it is noticed that almost one-third of the people suffering from Hemophilia, there is no family history found for the disorder. However, if it is inherited, it can be caused by any one of the following conditions:

  • If a mother has hemophilia, and the father does not have hemophilia; there are 50% chances that each son might suffer from the disorder. There are also 50% chances that a daughter might be a carrier of the hemophilia gene.
  • If a mother is not suffering from hemophilia and the father is a hemophilia survivor, there are chances their daughters will carry the hemophilia gene. Whereas, no son will suffer from the disorder.
  • If both the parents do not suffer from the disorder, none of the children will carry the hemophilia gene.

Signs and Symptoms of Hemophilia

  • Blood in the urine or stool
  • Pain, swelling or tightness in the joints
  • Unexplained irritability in infants
  • Many large or deep bruises
  • Nose bleeding without a known cause
  • Unusual bleeding after the vaccinations

Diagnosis of the disorder

  • If there’s someone in the family suffering from the disorder, it can be determined during pregnancy if the fetus will suffer from the same disorder.
  • In adults and children, a blood test can determine the clotting factor deficiency.

Treatments

  • First aid for minor cuts: Using a bandage and pressure will generally look after the bleeding. For minor areas of bleeding under the skin, try an ice pack. Ice pops are usually used to slow down minor bleeding in the mouth.
  • Vaccinations: Although blood products are scanned, there’s a possibility for people who depend on them to contract the diseases. If you have hemophilia, consider getting vaccinations against hepatitis A and B.
  • Physical therapy: It can ease the signs and symptoms, if internal bleeding has damaged your joints. If internal bleeding has caused severe damage, you may need surgery.

When to visit a doctor?

  • A physical injury in which the bleeding does not stop
  • Swollen joints that give a burning sensation and are painful enough to bend
  • Symptoms and signs of bleeding in the brain
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