von Willebrand Disease

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Overview

Von Willebrand disease is a genetic blood disorder that keeps platelets from sticking to holes in blood vessels to patch them. Healthy platelets stick to wounds and to each other to help form clots that stop bleeding. A protein in the blood and blood vessels called von Willebrand factor causes platelets to stick to injured vessel walls. If there is not enough of this protein or the protein does not work right, the platelets do not stick. This can lead to excessive bleeding.

Children and teens with von Willebrand disease are treated at Seattle Children’s, a founding organization of Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. Seattle Children’s has a long history of successfully caring for children and teens with this and other blood disorders.

Expert Care for Your Child

Von Willebrand disease in children is not very common, so community doctors usually have limited knowledge of the disease. This is why in the United States almost all children with von Willebrand disease receive treatment at a center, like Seattle Children’s, with experience in children’s blood disorders.

Seattle Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center brings together experts from more than 20 subspecialties to provide diagnostic services and treatments, including the very latest options. Our team of pediatric hematologists, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, nurses, Child Life specialists, social workers, and chaplains partner with you to provide expert, family-centered care and compassionate support. We help you understand your child’s health and treatment options because you, your child, and your family are an important part of the care team.

Seattle Children’s works closely with Puget Sound Blood Center, a partnership that gives you and your child access 24 hours a day to nurses who are experts in caring for children with bleeding disorders.

Because Seattle Children’s doctors take part in national and international research studies, and often lead them, we can offer new treatment options that many other hospitals cannot give their patients.

Learn More

Read more on the Seattle Children’s website about:

Make an Appointment

To make an appointment, call Seattle Children’s at (206) 987-2106.