ZocdocAnswersIs hemophilia linked to arthritis?

Question

Is hemophilia linked to arthritis?

I am a 29 year old female with hemophilia. I always wake up very stiff. I think I might be developing arthritis. Is this related to the hemophilia at all?

Answer

Hemophilia is a common condition. In addition, arthritis is also fairly common -- although less common in people your age. I would recommend that you discuss this with your primary care physician in order to have this evaluated. There are some serious problems that can occur in your joints if left unattended -- as such early diagnosis and treatment is key. To answer your question -- YES -- there is a relation between arthritis and hemophilia. The link is really that hemophilia can lead to hemarthropathies. This term refers to the fact that one can bleed into the joint space of a joint. The blood can that cause scarring and hardening of the joint space and therefore joint pain. Often, joint contractures -- where you cannot move the joint easily -- is a common manifestation of a hemarthropathy. If this is the case then you require more thorough treatment of your hemophilia. This is not likely your cause if all joints are involved -- for most people there are only a few "target joints." The more likely scenarios is that you have two common problems that are unrelated. It is less likely that you have osteoarthritis as this is more common in older adults -- but autoimmune arthritis like rheumatoid should be ruled out. Talk to your doctor.

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