What is Factor VII Deficiency?
This factor deficiency has had several names, including proconvertin and serum prothrombin conversion accelerator (SPCA) deficiency. Often, people with factor VII deficiency are diagnosed as newborns as a result of bleeding into the brain following birth truama. The incidence of factor VII deficiency is 1 in 500,000.
Individuals with factor VII deficiency can experience spontaneous nosebleeds, gum bleeding, bleeding from injuries in small blood vessels, or bleeding deep within the skin, as well as bleeding into the stomach, intestine, and urinary tract. They also may experience bleeding into joints. Women with factor VII deficiency can also experience heavy menstrual bleeding. Bleeding severity after an injury or surgery can vary greatly for people with factor VII deficiency.
To date, factor VII concentrate is sold only in Europe. Because
this product is not yet licensed for use in the United States it can be obtained in this country only with special permission. Other treatment choices are prothrombin complex concentrates that contain adequate levels of factor VII. Recombinant factor VII, an activated form, is currently available only for experimental use.
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Reprinted, with permission, of the National Hemophilia Foundation, Inc.