Non-Malignant Blood Disorders in Children

University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital brings world-class pediatric cancer treatment close to home. Our pediatric cancer team in the Angie Fowler Adolescent & Young Adult Cancer Institute is supported by a comprehensive and extensive system of experts who deliver the highest level of care for babies and children with cancer.

Extensive System of Care

Our pediatric hematologists and other blood disorder specialists emphasize the prevention of long-term complications. Depending on the diagnosis, this could include issues resulting from intermittent bleeding episodes and clotting events. With an extensive system of care available to all patients, we offer a full range of comprehensive services and lifelong support to children with blood disorders.


Treating Sickle Cell Disease in Children and other Pediatric Blood Disorders

There are several types of blood disorders that can affect babies, children and young adults. A non-malignant disorder means it is not cancerous, yet these disorders can still be very serious. We treat a wide range of pediatric blood disorders, including sickle cell disease and hemophilia in children. Some of the most common non-malignant blood disorders we treat include:

  • Anemia: Children with anemia do not have enough healthy red blood cells to carry oxygen throughout the body. This can cause anemic patients to feel tired and weak and can range from mild to severe.
  • Aplastic anemia: This is a rare and serious condition in which the child’s body stops producing new blood cells. Aplastic anemia creates a higher risk of infections and uncontrolled bleeding.
  • Factor V Leiden: This inherited condition causes an increased risk of abnormal blood clots, or thrombophilia. Some clots do no damage at all, while others can be life-threatening.
  • Hemochromatosis: This is a common inherited disorder in which the body absorbs too much iron. Over time, excess iron can build up in major organs and cause the organs to become diseased.
  • Hemophilia: This rare disorder means the child’s body lacks blood-clotting proteins. Patients with this disease bleed longer than normal after a cut or injury or may even experience spontaneous bleeding.
  • Histiocytosis: This disease occurs when there is an overproduction of a type of white blood cells called histiocytes. This can lead to organ damage or tumor formation.
  • Idiopathic thrombocytopenia purpura: This disorder results from low levels of platelets, or cells that help the blood to clot. It can cause easy or excessive bruising or bleeding.
  • Immune cytopenias
  • Myelodysplasia (spina bifida): This group of disorders results from an issue in the bone marrow. The syndromes occur when something stops new blood cells, which are produced in the blood marrow, from maturing.
  • Neutrofil disorders: Patients who have too few neutrophils, a type of white blood cell, are at greater risk for infections.
  • Platelet disorders: Platelets are a type of blood cell that helps blood clot. Low platelet counts can cause easy or excessive bruising and superficial bleeding.
  • Protein C&S disorders: Deficiencies in Protein C and Protein S are genetic disorders. These are both natural substances that help blood clot.
  • Rare factor deficiencies: Clotting factors help the body control bleeding. This group of inherited disorders is caused by a problem with one or more clotting factors.
  • Sickle Cell Disease: This disease is an inherited condition in which the body does not produce enough healthy red blood cells to carry oxygen throughout the body. This can cause severe pain and potentially cause harm to organs, muscles and bones.

Early Diagnosis and Life-changing Blood Disorder Treatment Options

Common blood disorder symptoms include fatigue, dizziness, shortness of breath, easy bruising and excessive bleeding. For many blood disorders in children, early diagnosis is critical. In addition to diagnostic evaluation, our team offers genetics counseling as many non-malignant blood disorders are inherited or genetic disorders.

Treatment Options

Our pediatric blood disorder team collaborates across the system of care to deliver the best treatment for each patient. Treatment options vary depending on the diagnosis. Some of the innovative therapies we offer include immune-modulating therapies, transfusions or clotting factor support, growth factor supplementation, chemotherapy and bone marrow transplant. Our comprehensive care services also include:

  • Consultations by specialists in ear, nose and throat, dentistry, gynecology and other specialty areas
  • Medical supervision

Working with multidisciplinary pediatric specialists, our team members utilize extensive knowledge and experience in the field of blood disorders in children to deliver high-quality, compassionate care, at convenient locations across northeast Ohio.

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