What is Hemophilia A
Hemophilia A (also known as factor VIII deficiency or classic hemophilia) is a rare bleeding disorder that causes symptoms such as prolonged bleeding and easy bruising.1 Hemophilia A is mainly inherited.1 According to the CDC, hemophilia A occurs in approximately 1 in 6,250 male births; it rarely occurs in females. In about one-third of the cases, there is no family history of the disorder.2
Living with hemophilia A can present challenges. Several medical treatments are available, based on the severity of symptoms. The condition requires self-care, preparedness, and support from a dedicated healthcare team.2
Eighty percent of people with hemophilia have hemophilia A.3 It is usually an inherited disorder, but about one-third of cases are caused by a spontaneous mutation, a change in a gene.4 People born with hemophilia A (usually males and rarely females) don’t have enough factor VIII, a protein that helps your blood clot. When blood can’t clot properly, prolonged bleeding as well as other signs and symptoms of hemophilia A can occur.1,4
People with mild hemophilia usually have bleeding episodes only after serious injury, trauma, or surgery. In many cases, mild hemophilia is not discovered until an injury, a surgery, or a tooth extraction causes excessive bleeding. That’s why the first episode may not occur until adulthood. About 25% of hemophilia patients have mild hemophilia A.4
About 15% of hemophilia patients have moderate hemophilia A. Moderate hemophilia is typically marked by bleeding episodes after injuries. People may also experience spontaneous bleeding episodes, which are occasional bleeding episodes without an obvious cause.4
About 60% of people with hemophilia A have severe hemophilia. These people have bleeding following an injury and may have frequent spontaneous bleeding episodes, often into the joints and muscles.4
There is no cure for hemophilia A but with proper self-care and treatment, children and adults who have the disease can lead healthy, active lives.
- Fast facts. National Hemophilia Foundation website. http://www.hemophilia.org/About-Us/Fast-Facts. Accessed October 14, 2014.
- Hemophilia: data and statistics. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/hemophilia/data.html. Updated August 26, 2014. Accessed October 14, 2014.
- Frequently asked questions about hemophilia. National Hemophilia Foundation website. http://www.hemophilia.org/walk/docs/NHFFAQs.pdf. Accessed October 14, 2014.
- Hemophilia A. National Hemophilia Foundation website. http://www.hemophilia.org/Bleeding-Disorders/Types-of-Bleeding-Disorders/Hemophilia-A. Accessed October 14, 2014.