If you are a female relative of a person with haemophilia it is important to know if you are a carrier. You should know about any bleeding tendency prior to surgery or any dental procedure. It is vitally important to know your carrier status when planning a family.
You ARE a carrier if you are:
- A daughter of a man with haemophilia.
- A mother with more than one son with haemophilia.
- A mother with one son with haemophilia and a blood relative with haemophilia.
- Possible carrier
When a man has haemophilia the following family members should be tested for their carrier status: mother, sisters, grandaughters, cousins, nieces, aunts. If you are a carrier it is important to be aware of your factor levels as this can be relevant if you require surgery, are undergoing any dental procedures, are planning a family and when you are pregnant.
If your daughter is a Carrier
It should not be assumed that a young girl who has grown up with a father or brother with haemophilia is aware of her possible carrier status. A young girl needs to be given information relevant to her age and using language that she can understand. This information needs to be given on an ongoing basis as she matures to help her understand it at her level.
When the time comes for your daughter to be tested for her carrier status (usually at 16 years of age) you will need to be extra supportive. Remember that at her age, personal image is all important and allow for some negative reaction. Your daughter will be aware of other family members attitude to the bleeding disorder affecting your family and will be influenced by that.
Remember that daughters may not be tested for carrier status until they are sixteen years of age. However, it is very important that parents know their child’s factor level as soon as possible. This is especially important if the child may ever require surgery or any situation which may result in bleeding, as if they are a carrier their factor level may be low.
Click below to view a presentation on Carriers by haemotology nurse Eadaoin O’Shea: