Posted by lgrasshoff to Disease/Illness, Jun 12, 2010 1:22pm
The most common bleeding disorder is von Willebrand disease, yet it is the most under diagnosed bleeding disorder. This disorder affects both males and females, as opposed to hemophilia which usually only affects the male gender, yet there are a few exceptions. My husband and I were diagnosed with mild vWD in our early 40's. The only reason we were tested is because our son was diagnosed with moderate hemophilia at birth, yet when he experienced bleeding episodes the factor medication to stop the bleeding did not work. As a result our family had genectic testing done and we were all diagnosed with vWD. Our son has type 3, severe vWD, which in its self is extremely rare. Looking back to my childhood I had all the symtoms for mild vWD, but my mother and grandmother always told me it was normal to have heavy periods, nose bleeds, and easy bruising. If a young lady presented those symtoms today to a doctor, regardless of his/her specialtly, she should be tested for vWD. One of the reasons females are not diagnoed until a trauma occurs, is becasue doctors and dentists are usually under the impression that bleeding disorders, hemophilia, is for males only. There are many women today that experience heavy bleeding for whatever the reason, yet for the most part, their doctor does not think about a possible a bleeding disorder. Ob/Gyn doctors and dentists need more education about vWD, so that the thousands of young ladies and women can be tested for a bleeding disorder. I am very active in the local and national foundations for bleeding disorders, the National Hemophilia Foundation and the Hemophilia Federation of America are just two major organizations that work around the clock for ALL of us with a bleeding disorder. There is not a cure for hemophilia or vWD; therefore, this is a life long disorder that needs national attention. Thank you for reading my segment description. It would be awesome to see this air!