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Bleeding history

Providing a bleeding history

One of the first steps in diagnosis will be to look at your experiences of bleeding over your lifetime. 

This may happen when you are being seen by your general practitioner (GP) or by a specialist, eg a haematologist (doctor specialising in blood diseases) or the treating team at a Haemophilia Treatment Centre (HTC).

Your doctor or the HTC nurse will ask you questions about your medical history, including your periods and any other bleeding problems you have experienced. They will also ask you about your medications, including over-the-counter medications, herbal medicines and supplements.

These questions are to see if you have bleeding problems that suggest you have a bleeding disorder and what kind of bleeding pattern you have. 

What are signs you might have a bleeding tendency?

  • Bruising easily
  • Having more pain, swelling and/or bruising than you would expect after an injury, eg falling off a bike, car accident, sporting injury
  • Bleeding or oozing for a long time after dental surgery or extractions, other surgery and medical procedures, injuries or accidents
  • Internal bleeding into joints, muscles, organs (eg, brain, stomach, uterus, etc) and other soft tissues (body tissue under the skin that supports and connects the body parts). This is more common in severe haemophilia.

Women and girls may also have:

  • Heavy and/or long menstrual periods. 
  • Heavy bleeding for a long time after childbirth. 

Heavy periods can lead to low red blood cells or iron levels in the blood (anaemia), which can cause tiredness, shortness of breath, pale skin colour and poor concentration.

Date last reviewed: 1 March 2023

Important Note: This information was developed by Haemophilia Foundation Australia for education and information purposes only and does not replace advice from a treating health professional. Always see your health care provider for assessment and advice about your individual health before taking action or relying on published information. This information may be printed or photocopied for educational purposes.

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