All bleeding episodes have to be treated promptly by increasing the level of factor 8 or 9 as necessary. Increasing blood factors can be achieved by either stimulating release of factor (eg. using DDAVP) or by infusion of cryoprecipitate or external factor concentrates. There are various preparations of factor concentrates eg. pooled donor concentrates (from many blood donors) or recombinant concentrates (from genetic manipulations of animal models to produce human factors). The administration of factors could be done by a medical professional or be taught to the patients/relatives (ie home treatment) in order to decrease their dependency on hospital treatment.
However, there are problems with the administration of foreign factor 8 or 9 eg. developing antibodies against these factors, minimal risk of contracting infections (eg. hepatitis C, hepatitis B, HIV, CJD), and allergic reactions. Intensive study in gene therapy (ie to correct the abnormal gene in haemophilia directly) is currently undertaken in several major centres. There is hope that this would provide a cure in future.
The National Haemophilia Registry was set up at SGH in August 1995 to collect all data on Hemophilia and to assist treatment of all hemophilia patients and affected family members.
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