hemophilia

noun
he·​mo·​phil·​ia | \ˌhē-mə-ˈfi-lē-ə \

Definition of hemophilia 

: a hereditary, sex-linked blood defect occurring almost exclusively in males that is marked by delayed clotting of the blood with prolonged or excessive internal or external bleeding after injury or surgery and in severe cases spontaneous bleeding into joints and muscles and that is caused by a deficiency of clotting factors

Note: Hemophilia is inherited as an X-linked recessive trait in which the mother must pass on a copy of the defective gene to a male child, and more rarely, both parents must pass on copies of the defective gene to a female child.

— see hemophilia a, hemophilia b

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Did You Know?

The dreaded disease known as hemophilia is the result of an inherited gene, and almost always strikes boys rather than girls (though mothers may pass the gene to their sons). Since the blood lacks an ingredient that causes it to clot or coagulate when a blood vessel breaks, even a minor wound can cause a hemophiliac to bleed to death if not treated. Bleeding can be particularly dangerous when it's entirely internal, with no visible wound, since the person may not be aware it's happening. Queen Victoria transmitted the hemophilia gene to royal families all across Europe; the hemophilia of a young Russian prince played a part in the downfall of the Russian czars. Today, hemophiliacs take drugs that stop the bleeding by speeding coagulation, and hemophiliac life expectancies in developed countries are almost as long as the average.

Examples of hemophilia in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Biogen’s decision to spin out its hemophilia division in 2016 paid off in a big way for its shareholders earlier this year, when a French pharma giant bought Bioverativ at a 63% premium. Charley Grant, WSJ, "How Big Biotech Can Win Back Investors," 12 Apr. 2018 In a potential setback for Roche (RHHBY), five patients taking its new Hemlibra hemophilia treatment have died, raising uncertainty about the safety of the medication, even though the company maintained its drug did not cause any of the deaths. Ed Silverman, STAT, "Roche denies new hemophilia drug caused patient deaths, but could face ‘heightened concerns’," 28 Mar. 2018 Gottlieb said that hemophilia is the first disease the FDA will target with its new policy, but did not specify why. Ike Swetlitz, STAT, "FDA plans to speed path to approval for some gene therapies, starting with hemophilia," 22 May 2018 Researchers are exploring ways to use gene editing to treat a range of diseases, such as cystic fibrosis, hemophilia and sickle cell disease. Rebecca Lurye, courant.com, "Gene Editing Shows Promise In Yale Study," 29 June 2018 They were supposed to be a temporary solution, said Dana Kuhn, a hemophilia and HIV patient who founded PSI. Carolyn Y. Johnson, chicagotribune.com, "Mother, wife, million-dollar patient: Keeping her alive is a full-time job - and good business for drug companies," 26 Apr. 2018 Earlier this year, Sarissa scored a sizable profit on the breakup of Biogen Inc.’s spinoff of its Bioverativ hemophilia-drug business, which Sanofi SA bought for more than $11.5 billion. David Benoit, WSJ, "Ironwood Will Separate From Its Rare-Disease Drug Unit After Shareholder Pressure," 1 May 2018 Success with hemophilia would complete UniQure’s turnaround from just 12 months ago, when its shares languished near an all-time low. Bloomberg.com, "After $1 Million Drug Flop, UniQure Revives in Gene Therapy," 6 Apr. 2018 Kuhn, who has hemophilia and developed hepatitis C and HIV during a blood transfusion in the early 1980s, was struggling to pay for his own insurance at the time. USA TODAY, "Drug copay groups: Critical patient charities or fronts for drug makers?," 26 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hemophilia.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of hemophilia

1872, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for hemophilia

New Latin

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Last Updated

27 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for hemophilia

The first known use of hemophilia was in 1872

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More Definitions for hemophilia

hemophilia

noun

English Language Learners Definition of hemophilia

medical : a serious disease that causes a person who has been cut or injured to keep bleeding for a very long time

hemophilia

noun
he·​mo·​phil·​ia
variants: or chiefly British haemophilia \ ˌhē-​mə-​ˈfil-​ē-​ə \

Medical Definition of hemophilia 

: a tendency to uncontrollable bleeding especially : a hereditary, sex-linked blood disorder occurring almost exclusively in males that is marked by delayed clotting of the blood with prolonged or excessive internal or external bleeding after injury or surgery and in severe cases spontaneous bleeding into joints and muscles and that is caused by a deficiency of clotting factors

Note: Hemophilia is inherited as an X-linked recessive trait in which the mother must pass on a copy of the defective gene to a male child, and more rarely, both parents must pass on copies of the defective gene to a female child.

— see hemophilia a, hemophilia b — compare von willebrand disease

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