Name: Paul Gilbert
I would like to know what Hemophilia is and what it has to do with
genetics. How is this problem curbed or taken care of?
Hemophilia is a genetic disorder in which the normal blood
clotting process is disrupted. Although there are many variations, the
most common involve genes found on the X chromosome. This means that boys
are more likely to have the disease than girls, since boys only have
one X chromosome. If that one happens to have the "bad" gene, then there
isn't another "good" copy of the gene there to operate.
Children with hemophilia often bleed, especially internally, and this
can be very painful to life-threatening. Treatment involves injections
with the missing clotting factor. These injections can be very
expensive, often costing the family $1000 or more each month. The severity
of the disease varies from person to person, even within the same family.
Many hemophiliacs are able to live fairly normal lives. Others live very
painful and limited lives because of the severity of their disease.
Let me know if you'd like more information. You can also call your
local chapter of the Hemophilia Foundation.
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Update: June 2012