With proper medical care, people with hemophilia can expect to live full and productive lives. Yet complications still occur.
- During the late 1970s through 1985, up to 60% of severe hemophiliacs had contracted the HIV virus (the virus that causes AIDS) from blood products. Because of the development of genetically engineered factor and improved purification processes, no case of HIV transmission from clotting factors has been documented since 1986.
- Those using blood-derived products are still at risk for getting hepatitis.
- Hepatitis A can resist some purifying methods, but no hepatitis C transmission has been reported since 1997.
- Doctors recommend that all people with hemophilia receive the hepatitis B vaccine.
- Despite current treatments, people with hemophilia still undergo degenerative changes due to bleeding in the joints.
- When repeated bleeding occurs, chronic swelling results in that joint. The swelling leads to degeneration of cartilage and bone.
- Ultimately this process will cause chronic joint stiffness and pain.