The severity of a person’s hemophilia depends on the amount of clotting factor they have in their blood. Generally speaking, the disease is considered mild, moderate or severe, although around 70 percent of people living with the disease have the severe form.
Treatment for people with hemophilia has improved dramatically over the past few decades. With access to clotting factor, many people can now prevent major bleeds and live a normal life.
However, around 30 percent of those with the disease will die from a bleeding-related incident. The most life-threatening is intracranial bleeding. It’s estimated that around 10 percent of hemophilia patients will suffer some form of bleeding in the skull and this accounts for around a third of all hemophilia deaths.
Some with the disease will suffer from joint diseases like arthritis later in life, particularly if they didn’t treat joint bleeds quickly when they were young.
Without appropriate treatment, many hemophiliacs will die before adulthood. With treatment, the average life expectancy of someone with the disease is just 10 years less than the average man’s.
In the 1960s, the average lifespan for a boy with hemophilia was just 11 years old. Treatment and comprehensive care have both increased the average life expectancy dramatically, however many men with the disease died in the 1980s due to HIV- and AIDS-contaminated blood products. Find out more about prognosis and life expectancy of people with hemophilia here.
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