Hemophilia is a rare genetic blood clotting disorder that primarily affects males. People living with hemophilia do not have enough of, or are missing, one of the blood clotting proteins naturally found in blood. Two of the most common forms of hemophilia are A and B. In persons with hemophilia A (also called classic hemophilia), clotting factor VIII is not present in sufficient amounts or is absent. In persons with hemophilia B (also called Christmas disease), clotting factor IX is not present in sufficient amounts or is absent. People with hemophilia do not bleed more profusely or bleed faster than normal; they bleed for a longer period of time.
Virtually all people who have hemophilia A or B are born with it. The …show more content…
disorder. Many patients with mild hemophilia may not realize they have the disorder
until bleeding occurs due to a major event such as an accident or surgery.
The difference between symptoms for Factor VIII Deficiency (Hemophilia A) and Factor
IX Deficiency (Hemophilia B) is the degree of severity. Symptoms are often milder for
Factor IX Deficiency, due in part to the severity of the disorder. Severe Factor IX
Deficiency is less common. Many patients with Factor IX deficiency do not have
symptoms until stressed by surgery or trauma.
The goal of treatment for hemophilia is to prevent and/or reduce the frequency of
symptoms. Increasing factor levels to at least 5% of normal can cause symptoms of
severe hemophilia to improve to the level of moderate or even mild hemophilia. This can
be achieved with regular preventive infusions of factor.
More recent advances in hemophilia
The most significant advances in hemophilia treatment have been made in the last four decades. Baxter
Healthcare Corporation introduced the first commercially available plasma-derived factor concentrate in
the mid-1960s. This was a major advancement over earlier formulations, which contained much lower
concentrations of antihemophilic factor. In the early 1970s, home treatment of hemophilia became