Hemophilia is an inherited bleeding, or coagulation, disorder. Children with hemophilia lack the ability to stop bleeding because of the low levels, or complete absence, of specific proteins, called "factors," in their blood that are necessary for clotting. Proper clotting of blood helps prevent excessive bleeding. Hemophilia affects 1 in 10,000 males (no females) and appears early in childhood.
Types of Hemophilia
The two main types of hemophilia are:
Men and women each have 23 pairs of chromosomes (pronounced: kro -muh-soamz). Women have two X chromosomes; men have one X and one Y chromosome. Hemophilia is an X-linked genetic disorder, which means that it's passed from mother to son on the X chromosome. If the mother carries the gene for hemophilia on one of her X chromosomes, each of her sons will have a 50% chance of having hemophilia.
Although girls rarely develop the symptoms of hemophilia itself, they can be carriers of the disease. For a girl to get hemophilia, she would have to receive the disease on the chromosome she receives from her father, who would have hemophilia, as well as from the X chromosome of her mother, who would be a carrier. Although this is not impossible, it is highly unlikely.
Signs and symptoms
For people with a family history of hemophilia, it's possible to test the fetus during pregnancy to determine if the child is affected by the disease.
Analysis of a blood sample from either a child or an adult can show a deficiency of a clotting factor. Sometimes, mild hemophilia isn't diagnosed until after a person has undergone surgery and excessive bleeding results
Medical Treatment- A hematologist will direct treatment of any bleeding episode when it occurs. You may require hospitalization or care in an outpatient facility for transfusions of plasma and various blood factors.
Cannot be prevented at resent. If your family has a history of hemophilia, obtain genetic counseling before having children.
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