Bleeding Disorders Awareness Month is observed every year in March as a time to talk about and spread awareness about bleeding disorders such as hemophilia. This genetic disease is found in every 1 in 5,000 boys but is very rarely reported in girls. To spread awareness about bleeding disorders, and to work towards their prevention, organizations use the month of March to run programs, campaigns, and other projects. It’s an opportunity for people living with these diseases to share their stories and for people to learn more about what is needed to treat and cure these conditions.
History of Bleeding Disorders Awareness Month
‘Bleeding disorders’ is a general term used to describe various conditions. The most common bleeding disorder is hemophilia, which is a condition that causes the blood clotting process to slow down, leading to regular occurrences of heavy bleeding. Approximately 20,000 patients in the U.S. are registered as having this disease, and globally, it has an impact on hundreds of thousands of people’s lives.
The National Hemophilia Foundation (N.H.F.) has been around since 1948 when it was founded by Robert and Betty Jane Henry. Their son had been diagnosed as a hemophiliac and the only way to treat him at the time was by means of a continuous blood transfusion. Within six years, the founders of the N.H.F. had expanded the organization so much that the once two-member team now consisted of numerous doctors and researchers, all committed to fighting hemophilia.
In the years that followed, a medical advisory council was formed to provide those suffering from the disorder with treatment options. Today, the foundation has spread all across the country and has a presence in every state. Together, members of the N.H.F. have raised more than $22 million for the cause. The efforts of the founders have been built upon and their dedication to researching ways to fight this bleeding disorder has not wavered.
In attempts to gain wider attention at the national and international level, the N.H.F. eventually managed to get a full month dedicated to spreading awareness about blood disorders and discussing the efforts that need to be taken to develop a cure or better treatment options for the disorder. In 2016, March was declared as Bleeding Disorder Awareness Month, and ever since, the foundation has been using this month to spread as much information as possible about various types of bleeding disorders.
Later a red-tie challenge was added to the traditions of Bleeding Disorders Awareness Month. People were encouraged to wear red ties to raise awareness of the cause and bring people together to fight bleeding disorders.
Bleeding Disorders Awareness Month timeline
Robert and Betty J. Henry found the foundation after their son is diagnosed with a genetic anomaly that causes him to suffer from a bleeding disorder.
The N.H.F. is so successful that within six years, they engage numerous doctors and researchers to work with them, and a medical advisory council is formed.
With continuous research underway, and efforts being made to spread awareness about bleeding disorders, March is declared as the month to think about and talk about bleeding disorders.
After the successful launching of the awareness month, a red-tie challenge is thrown into the mix to give people an opportunity to show that they care about the cause.
Bleeding Disorders Awareness Month FAQs
When is World Hemophilia Day?
World Hemophilia Day is commemorated on April 17th.
Which are the most common bleeding disorders?
The most common bleeding disorders include hemophilia A, hemophilia B, and Von Willebrand disease.
What is considered a bleeding disorder?
Bleeding disorders are any conditions that cause problems with the body’s blood clotting process.
How To Observe Bleeding Disorders Awareness Month
Participate in the red-tie challenge
Be part of the red-tie challenge and show your support for the cause throughout March. If people ask you why you keep wearing that red tie, use the opportunity to talk about bleeding disorders.
Thanks to advanced research, doctors have been able to reduce the harm caused by bleeding disorders, but there is always a need for blood donors. Donate a pint this March and save a life.
Share your support on social media
Over the years, social media has become an invincible force. Show your support for the month by sharing relevant content on social media and making the topic trend.
5 Interesting Facts About Blood Disorders
They’re first referenced in the 2nd century
Blood disorders were first mentioned in a passage in the Talmud, which is an ancient Jewish text.
Thousands of hemophiliacs died of AIDS
In the 1980s, it is estimated that 90% of all patients with severe hemophilia in the U.S. contracted HIV due to donations of contaminated blood.
Small injuries become a big deal
If you are a hemophiliac, even a small injury can mean a trip to the hospital because of blood loss.
Hemophilia is diagnosed through blood tests
Doctors can run blood tests to check if blood is clotting properly and a different type of blood test reveals the type of hemophilia and the severity levels.
Von Willebrand disease is the most common
People with this disorder have low levels of a protein that helps the blood to clot.
Why Bleeding Disorders Awareness Month is Important
It spreads awareness
The mission is to spread awareness as far as possible. With a proper early-stage diagnosis, the symptoms of many bleeding disorders can be suppressed.
Everyone deserves to live a healthy life
With research and advancements, a cure can be found someday for many of these conditions. In order to make this happen, the world needs to come together and take this matter seriously.
It creates understanding
These conditions are often misunderstood and misdiagnosed, which causes problems later. Understanding that bleeding disorders are serious conditions that need early diagnosis is extremely important.
Bleeding Disorders Awareness Month dates