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Von Willebrand Disease – Treating and managing a bleed

Minor bleeds such as nosebleeds, bruises and minor cuts can often be controlled using simple first aid measures. 

It is important to contact your haemophilia centre for advice before treatment if you:

  • need to have a tooth out 
  • need surgery 
  • are injured 
  • are pregnant

If symptoms are not problematic treatment may not be needed. Treatment is tailored to each person’s specific condition, options include Tranexamic Acid (Cyklokapron), Desmopressin (DDAVP) and von Willebrand Factor replacement therapy.

Females may need to take additional measures during their periods. There is no need to just accept that you have heavy periods and adapt your life around them as treatment is available. Talk to your haemophilia centre as oral contraceptives, other hormone therapy and anti-fibrinolytic drugs can all be effective.  

Avoid aspirin and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NDAIDs) like ibuprofen unless your specialist advises you it is safe to use them, as these can make bleeding worse – use other medicines such as paracetamol instead. 

More information is available in our Understanding von Willebrand Disease booklet.