In the 1980’s, approximately 90% of people with severe hemophilia were infected with the HIV virus and almost all patients with hemophilia who used factor products before 1988 were infected with Hepatitis C (HCV).聽 Blood-borne infections were a major complication of treatment for people living with hemophilia.聽 At the time, factor products were manufactured using large plasma donor pools and the process lacked specific tests for infectious agents.聽 This tragedy resulted in the loss of many lives and brought to the forefront the need to change the manufacturing and screening processes.
Today, factor products today are considered theoretically safe.聽 Scientists have developed techniques to manufacture clotting factor from animal cells.聽聽Clotting factor created from animal cells is called recombinant factor.聽 Recombinant factor concentrates have never been known to transmit pathogens of any kind. 聽Plasma-derived products continue to play an important role in the treatment of bleeding disorders. 聽With testing and viral inactivation processes available today, plasma-derived products are considered very safe.
HCV is the leading cause of death for adults with聽hemophilia聽and is often referred to as 鈥渢he silent killer.” This video was created to help educate others on how聽HCV affects those living with hemophilia.