Haemophilia is an inherited bleeding disorder in which the blood lacks a clotting factor – either Factor VIII in Haemophilia A, or Factor IX in Haemophilia B. In both types of Haemophilia, children tend to bleed more easily than normal people as their blood is unable to clot normally. It is a lifelong condition that mainly affects males.
The signs of Haemophilia include being easily bruised without significant injury, and having swollen joints or muscles due to bleeding in the joint or muscle after injury. Bleeding can occur even without any noticeable injury. The most severe but rare types of bleeding are bleeding in the brain, and bleeding in the abdomen. These can be life-threatening or can cause permanent disability, especially if there is bleeding in the brain.
There is currently no cure for Haemophilia.
Children with Haemophilia are advised not to take part in contact sports and avoid injury especially to the abdomen or the head as internal bleeding can be life-threatening. However, they are still encouraged to exercise and keep fit through appropriate exercises such as swimming and non-contact sports such as badminton or table tennis. Exercise helps to strengthen their joints and muscles, helping the child to be less prone to bleeding. Some children are on "prophylactic replacement therapy" (i.e. they receive regular injections of factor concentrates, usually two to three times a week). They can engage in more vigorous exercises and live a normal lifestyle.
World Federation of HaemophiliaWorld Federation of Haemophilia is an international not-for-profit organization that was established in 1963.