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Bleeding Disorders

A bleeding disorder is a health problem that makes it hard for a person to stop bleeding. There are many different kinds of bleeding disorders. The two most common are haemophilia and von Willebrands Disease (vWD). There are also a number of rare bleeding disorders and platelet deficiencies.

Normally when a person is hurt, the body forms a blood clot to stop the bleeding quickly. For blood to clot, the body needs a type of blood cell called platelets, and blood proteins called clotting factors. People with bleeding disorders either have very low levels of platelets or clotting factors or they do not work correctly. Because of this, they bleed longer than normal.

There are 13 main clotting factors (identified by roman numerals) that work together to produce a clot. If one factor is missing the chain reaction is broken; clots will not form properly, and bleeding will continue.

With medicine to replace the missing clotting factors, people with bleeding disorders can lead full and active lives.

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