How I treat age-related morbidities in elderly persons with hemophilia

Pier M Mannucci, Roger E G Schutgens, Elena Santagostino, Evelien P Mauser-Bunschoten
Blood 2009 December 17, 114 (26): 5256-63
In persons with hemophilia, life expectancy is now approaching that of the general male population, at least in countries that can afford regular replacement therapy with coagulation factor concentrates. The new challenges for comprehensive treatment centers are thus to provide optimal health care for this aging population of patients, who often present not only with the comorbidities typically associated with hemophilia (arthropathy, chronic pain, blood-borne infections), but also with common age-related illnesses such as cardiovascular disease and cancer. There are no evidence-based guidelines for the management of these conditions, which often require drugs that interfere with hemostasis, enhance the bleeding tendency, and warrant more intensive replacement therapy. At the moment, elderly patients with hemophilia affected by other diseases should be managed like their age-group peers without hemophilia, provided replacement therapy is tailored to the heightened risk of bleeding associated with the need for invasive procedures and drugs that further compromise the deranged hemostasis. More detailed advice is provided on the schedules of replacement therapy needed to tackle cardiovascular diseases, such as acute coronary syndromes and nonvalvular atrial fibrillation, because these conditions will become more and more frequent challenges for the comprehensive treatment centers.

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