Hemophilia, also known as the “Christmas Disease”, is a very rare bleeding disorder that causes it’s victims to bleed excessively and bruise easily. Seventy percent of hemophiliacs inherit this disease from their parents and the other thirty percent contract it simultaneously through a genetic mutation. Around 18,000 Americans are infected, and about 400 babies per year are born with the disease. Hemophilia almost always occurs in males. This is because males have a set of XY chromosomes and females have a set of XX chromosomes. Since Hemophilia is located on the X chromosome, it’s harder for women to contract it. When one of their X chromosomes is damaged, the second one can take over. Male chromosomes don’t have this ability because a second X chromosome does not exist.
People living with Hemophilia have little to no clotting factor in their bloodstream. Clotting factors are proteins present in your blood that allow it to clot together when a vein has been punctured. If you have Hemophilia, you lack the ability to stop bleeding on your own. Hemophiliacs have been known to bleed a long time after an injury or accident. They may also bleed into their knees, ankles, and elbows. Bleeding in the joints can be very painful and can often lead to arthritis when left untreated. Very serious complications such as bleeding in the brain can occur and immediate emergency treatment is required.
Hemophilia comes in two types: Type A and Type B. Approximately one in every ten thousand males is born with Type A Hemophilia, and one in every twenty-five thousand males has an occurrence of Hemophilia B. One in every five thousand women is a carrier of Hemophilia A, and one in twenty thousand is a carrier for Hemophilia B. Both types are broken up into three categories based on the amount of clotting factor present in the individual’s blood. These are known as severe, moderate, and mild. In severe hemophilia, there is usually less than one...