Bleeding disorders

Alternative Names

Coagulopathy

Definition of Bleeding disorders

Bleeding disorders are a group of conditions in which there is a problem with the body’s blood clotting process. These disorders can lead to heavy and prolonged bleeding after an injury. Bleeding can also begin on its own.

Causes, incidence, and risk factors

Normal blood clotting involves as many as 20 different plasma proteins, which are known as blood clotting or coagulation factors. These factors act together with other chemicals to form a substance called fibrin that stops bleeding.

Treatment

Treatment depends on the type of disorder. It may include:

Expectations (prognosis)

The outcome also depends on the disorder. Most primary bleeding disorders can be managed. Those due to diseases, such as DIC, depend on how well the disease is treated.

Review

David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine; and Yi-Bin Chen, MD, Leukemia/Bone Marrow Transplant Program, Massachusetts General Hospital. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc. – 3/2/2009

ADAM Medical Encyclopedia

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