Hemophilia

Emily Hayward

History

Hemophilia was first recognized in ancient times by the Jews, with the first treatments beginning in the early 1900s. At this time, treatment was not advanced. The only known treatment was to transfuse flesh blood after a significant amount was lost. Life expectancy for people with this disease was 13 years or younger.

Background

Hemophilia is a bleeding disorder that slows the blood clotting process. It is a single gene mutation, which means that only one gene is effected by the disease. It is commonly found in males. At this time, the life expectancy of someone who has Hemophilia varies depending on whether they receive proper treatment. Without proper treatment, many people die before adulthood. With treatment, the individual is expected to live about 10 years less than the average man.

How is Hemophilia inherited?

Hemophilia is a sex-linked recessive trait. This means that your family history plays a very important part in the disease's appearance. The X chromosome is the defective chromosome, with the mother of the newborn passing the it to her son.

Two major forms of Hemophilia

The two most common types of Hemophilia are Hemophilia A and Hemophilia B. Hemophilia A is the most common type, with about every 1 in 4,500 males inheriting it. However, only about every 1 in 20,000 male newborns are born with Hemophilia B.
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Diagnostic Tests

Screening tests and clotting factor tests are usually performed to determine whether or not the patient has Hemophilia. Screening tests are blood tests that show if the blood is clotting properly. Clotting factor tests, or factor assays, shows the type of Hemophilia and the severity of it. These are required to diagnose a bleeding disorder.

Is there any way to prevent Hemophilia?

As of now, there is no easy way to prevent Hemophilia since it is passed down to the son from his mother. If Hemophilia runs in your family, you may be tested to see whether you carry the defective gene, and receive counseling about your chance of having children with Hemophilia. You can also consider vitro fertilization. This may allow the selection and implantion of the embryos that lack the Hemophilia gene.

Vitro Fertilization

This is the preferred treatment of Hemophilia. It is treated by injecting the missing factor protein into the vein, which causes the factor available instantly in the blood stream.

Hemophilia Organizations

The three main support groups to help an individual with Hemophilia are the National Hemophilia Foundation, the Hemophilia Federation of America, and My Hemophilia Team.