Bleeding Disorders What Are Bleeding Disorders
Bleeding disorders are rare disorders affecting the way the body controls blood clotting. If your blood does not clot normally, you may experience problems with bleeding too much after an injury or surgery. This health topic will focus on bleeding disorders that are caused by problems with clotting factors, including hemophilia and von Willebrand disease.
Clotting factors, also called coagulation factors, are proteins in the blood that work with small cells, called platelets, to form blood clots. Any problem that affects the function or number of clotting factors or platelets can lead to a bleeding disorder.
A bleeding disorder can be inherited, meaning that you are born with the disorder, or it can be acquired, meaning it develops during your life. Symptoms can include easy bruising, heavy menstrual periods, and nosebleeds that happen often. Your doctor will review your symptoms, risk factors, medical history, and blood test results to diagnose a bleeding disorder.
Your doctor may recommend medicines or clotting factor replacement therapy to treat the bleeding disorder. Some bleeding disorders are lifelong conditions, and some can lead to complications. Even if you do not need medicine to treat the bleeding disorder, your doctor may recommend taking precautions before a medical procedure or during a pregnancy to prevent bleeding problems in the future.