Can Bleeds Cause Permanent Damage?

With hemophilia, bleeds that are not controlled can damage tissue and joints. This is the main challenge in treating hemophilia.4

It is important to try to prevent bleeds, recognize them, and treat them quickly when they do occur.4,13

Joint Damage

Joint bleeds can be painful. That alone is a good reason to prevent them and treat them quickly. Additionally, permanent joint damage can happen when bleeding into the muscles and joints is not controlled.4,13

Joint damage is called arthropathy.4,16 Permanent joint damage can take many forms, such as:

  • Long-term swelling13
  • Problems with a joint gradually becoming worse15
  • Problems with the shape of a joint4
  • Joints that don't align correctly14
  • Trouble moving the joint4
  • One arm or leg that is longer than the other14

Inhibitors and Joint Damage

In people with inhibitors, regular factor concentrates do not stop bleeding. Joints are at higher risk for permanent damage. Even with inhibitor bypassing therapy, sometimes a treatment that works for one person will not work for another.4

To prevent joint damage, the goal should always be to treat bleeds as quickly as possible when they do occur.4

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