Hemophilia A is the most common type of hemophilia. It is also known as factor VIII deficiency or classic hemophilia. It is largely an inherited disorder in which one of the proteins needed to form blood clots is missing or reduced. In about 30% of cases, there is no family history of the disorder and the condition is the result of a spontaneous gene mutation.
There are different levels of hemophilia: mild, moderate, and severe:
• People with mild hemophilia (6% to 49% factor level) usually have problems with bleeding only after serious injury, trauma, or surgery. In many cases, mild hemophilia is not discovered until an injury or surgery or tooth extraction results in unusual bleeding. The first episode may not occur until adulthood. People with severe hemophilia, levels below 5%, about 60% of the hemophilia population, have bleeding following an injury and may have frequent spontaneous bleeding episodes, often into the joints and muscles.
In cases of severe hemophilia, the Medical and Scientific Advisory Council of the National Hemophilia Foundation recommends prophylaxis as optimal therapy for children with severe hemophilia A and B.
The “prophylactic” treatment is prophylactic for bleeding episodes but it is constitutes treatment of the existing and actual factor deficiency., which is the disease and the problem for hemophilia patients. As such, I do not consider this to be a “preventative” treatment.
World Federation of Hemophiloia Guideline 2013, http://www.wfh.org/en/resources/wfh-treatment-guidelines
Srivastava A, Brewer AK, Mauser-Bunschoten EP, Key NS, Kitchen S, Llinas A, Ludlam CA, Mahlangu JN, Mulder K, Poon MC, Street A; Treatment Guidelines Working Group on Behalf of The World Federation Of Hemophilia. Guidelines for the management of hemophilia. Haemophilia. 2013 Jan;19(1):e1-47.
Coombes, R. (2007). “Bad blood.”. BMJ (Clinical research ed.) 334 (7599): 879–880.
Roberts HR, Hoffman M. Hemophilia A and B. In: Beutler E, Lichtman MA, Coller BS, Kipps TJ, Seligsohn U, eds. Williams Hematology. 6th ed. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill; 2001:1639-57.
Van den Berg HM, Fischer K, Mauser-Bunschoten EP, et al. Long-term outcome of individualized prophylactic treatment of children with severe haemophilia. Br J Haematol. Mar 2001;112(3):561-5