Signs and Symptoms

The most common symptom of hemophilia is bleeding, particularly into the joints and muscles. When a person with hemophilia is injured, he does not bleed faster than a person without hemophilia, but it takes longer for bleeding to stop. Bleeding also may start again several days after an injury or surgery.

Small cuts or surface bruises usually are not a problem, but deeper injuries may result in bleeding episodes that can lead to permanent disability unless they are treated promptly.

Other symptoms of hemophilia include easy bruising, prolonged nosebleeds or vomiting of blood.

Symptoms and Severity of Hemophilia

Hemophilia may occur in mild, moderate and severe forms, based on both the patient's symptoms and the level or amount of clotting factor in the blood.

  • Mild hemophilia — The person has 6 percent to 49 percent of the normal factor level, and usually bleeds only after serious injury, trauma or surgery. The first episode of bleeding may not occur until adulthood.
  • Moderate hemophilia — The person has 1 percent to 5 percent of the normal factor level and has bleeding episodes after injuries, major trauma or surgery. He also may experience occasional bleeding without obvious cause, called spontaneous bleeding episodes.
  • Severe hemophilia — The person has less than 1 percent factor level and experiences bleeding following an injury or surgery, and may have frequent spontaneous bleeding episodes into the joints and muscles.

A person's severity of hemophilia does not change over time, because factor level is determined by genetics.

Reviewed by health care specialists at UCSF Medical Center.

Related Information

UCSF Clinics & Centers


Hemophilia Treatment Center
400 Parnassus Ave., 4th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94143
Phone: (415) 353-2421
Fax: (415) 353-2467
Appointment information

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