Bleeding Disorders

Bleeding Disorder Conditions

Hemophilia A

Hemophilia A is caused by low or absent levels of functioning factor VIII (factor 8). Factor VIII is a protein that is necessary for blood to clot properly. When it is absent, spontaneous bleeding can occur, most often in the joints. When factor VIII levels are present, bleeding can be variable in that some people may have joint bleeding without much trauma, whereas others only have bleeding with major surgery.

Von Willebrand Disease

Von Willebrand Disease is caused by low levels of functional von Willebrand factor. Von Willebrand factor has two main functions: 1) connecting platelets to sites of injured blood vessels and 2) protecting factor VIII from a normal breakdown in the blood circulation. There are at least 6 types of von Willebrand Disease.

Platelet Function Disorders

Platelet function disorders are a collection of disorders that leads platelets to not function properly. Platelets are cells that are in circulation and can be thought of as the first responder to injury. When a blood vessel is damaged, the platelets quickly get stuck at that injured site and form a plug to stop the bleeding. Patients with platelet function defects typically have normal platelet counts, but each platelet doesn’t work as well as it should. Testing for a platelet function disorder can include testing how the platelets clump together (platelet aggregation), how the proteins in the platelet are released when platelets are activated (platelet release assay), measuring the markers (receptors) on the outside of the platelets, and using electron microscopy to exam the platelet contents.

Rare Bleeding Disorders Care

Our approach to treating rare bleeding disorders is highly individualized. We look at your specific disease subtype, lifestyle, bleeding history and treatment and risk factors to develop a unique plan for you.