Von Willebrand Disease

What is it?  

Von Willebrand disease is a bleeding disorder caused by low levels of Von Willebrand Factor (VWF), a protein that helps blood clot

How is it acquired?  

Although this condition is usually hereditary in rare cases it can appear throughout  life. The prevalence of clinically significant cases is 100 per million.


Recurrent, prolonged and excessive bleeding from the nose, gums or when an injury occurs. Women also have greater menstrual flow and longer periods. Also, there is a tendency to bruise or lumpy bruises.  

According to figures from the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office on Women’s Health (OWH), one in 10 women with heavy menstrual periods may have a bleeding disorder.  

Von Willebrand disease is classified into 3 types:  

Type 1. It is the most common and also the mildest.  

Type 2. It is more serious so the bleeding may be greater than expected based on the amount of VWF that is detected in the blood.  

Type 3. It is the most serious but less frequent form.