How to treat hemophilia B

Hemophilia B is the second most common type of hemophilia, a rare inherited blood clotting disorder that can cause excessive bleeding. Hemophilia B can be treated with synthetic or plasma-derived replacements of factor IX, a blood clotting protein that people with the disease lack.

The other mainstay of treatment is to avoid injury and promptly treat bleeding events that do occur. Severe bleeding complications may require specific interventions to reduce the risk of harmful effects on your health, such as joint bleeding that can lead to arthritis.

This article will review lifestyle management strategies and treatment options for hemophilia B.

Home Remedies and Lifestyle

There is no cure for hemophilia B, but you and your family can learn how to prevent injuries and treat clotting factors at home.

You should always change your clotting factor at home, whether or not you are receiving treatment at home. This is what you need in an emergency. After your factor treatment, rest, ice, compression, and elevation are required, also known as the acronym for the RICE method.

Additionally, being aware of the following risk factors may help reduce your risk of serious medical complications:

  • Avoid hazards or dangerous situations that could result in injury
  • Avoid blood thinners such as heparin, Jantoven, or coumarin (warfarin) and Plavix (clopidogrel), and medicines that make bleeding worse, such as aspirin and Advil or Motrin IB (ibuprofen)
  • maintain good dental hygiene
  • Regular low-intensity exercise, such as swimming and cycling, while avoiding contact sports, such as football and rugby
  • Get vaccinated — and use the smallest needle possible — to protect you from infection
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wound management

If you or your child is bleeding acutely from a minor injury, rinse the cut or wound first, then apply pressure to the wound with sterile gauze, bandage, or a clean cloth. This may be enough to stop bleeding and promote healing.

For severe or non-stopping wounds, follow the instructions to clean and bandage the wound and elevate the injured limb above the heart. Next, if available, factor replacement therapy. Finally, call your care team and go to your healthcare provider’s office, hemophilia treatment center, or emergency room.

When is a nosebleed an emergency?

Over-the-Counter (OTC) Therapies

Joint bleeding and bruising can be painful. Unfortunately, common over-the-counter pain relievers like aspirin and Advil or Motrin IB interfere with the body’s ability to clot. Therefore, you may want to replace these medications with Tylenol (acetaminophen) for pain relief.


While there is no cure for hemophilia B, the disease can be treated long-term by prescribing a replacement for factor IX, which is deficient in children and adults with the disease. Other medications may also be prescribed to help promote blood clotting. Treatment includes:

  • Factor IX products: An estimated 75% of people with hemophilia are treated with laboratory-made synthetic clotting factors. There are also products made from human plasma. All of these products can be injected into a vein periodically to prevent bleeding, or given as needed in the event of a bleeding episode:
  • Amicar (aminocaproic acid): This clot-preserving medication is taken by mouth as a pill or liquid to prevent the clot from breaking. It can also be prescribed before surgery or when bleeding.
  • Fiber Sealants: These are medical grade glues that can be applied directly to the wound site as they promote clotting and healing in people with hemophilia.

Expert-Driven Program

Surgery is not a common treatment for hemophilia B, but surgery or other treatments, such as blood transfusions or intravenous FIX for massive blood loss, can sometimes be done at a comprehensive hemophilia treatment center (HTC).

HTC is a facility made up of a multidisciplinary team that includes specialized treatments for blood disorders (called hematologist) and physical therapists specializing in physical medicine and rehabilitation, as well as nurses, social workers, physical therapists, and other health care providers who specialize in the care of patients with bleeding disorders.

Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM)

There are no CAM treatments approved for hemophilia B, and some treatments put you at greater risk of bleeding. It is important to discuss any CAM treatment you are considering with a hematologist (a blood disease specialist) to make sure it is safe for your condition.

Hemophilia B can cause bleeding in the joints and muscles, which can lead to severe joint pain and swelling.Repeated bleeding from joints can lead to arthritis over time.

Some CAM interventions, such as yoga, moderate exercise (such as swimming, cycling, or even weight lifting), and physical therapy, can help manage pain and prevent damage from joint bleeding. These activities may also help improve the quality of life of people with hemophilia.


The main treatment for hemophilia B is prophylactic (prophylactic) administration of factor IX, but the specific treatment depends on the severity of your hemophilia and the need to manage your acute needs at the time. A personalized treatment plan tailored to you can relieve symptoms and reduce the risk of complications. Specific treatment for hemophilia depends on:

  • your age, general health and medical history
  • extent of disease
  • your tolerance to a particular drug, procedure or therapy
  • expectations of disease progression
  • your opinion or preference

VigorTip words

Comprehensive treatment for hemophilia often involves seeing multiple specialists and other health care providers. You and your caregivers should be able to obtain more information about new treatment options, with a special emphasis on providing individualized health education tailored to the challenges you may currently face.