Von Willebrand disease: Symptoms & Signs, Diagnosis & Tests

Symptoms & Signs

  • Abnormal menstrual bleeding
  • Bleeding of the gums
  • Bruising
  • Nose bleeds
  • Skin rash

Diagnosis & Tests

Tests that may be done to diagnose this disease include:

  • Bleeding time (is prolonged)
  • Platelet aggregation test
  • Platelet count (may be normal)
  • Ristocetin cofactor test (the primary assay test used to diagnose von Willebrand disease)
  • Von Willebrand factor level (level is reduced)

This disease may also alter the results of the following tests:

  • Factor VIII level
  • Von Willebrand factor multimers (parts of the von Willebrand factor protein molecule)

Von Willebrand disease may be hard to diagnose. Low von Willebrand factor levels and bleeding do not always mean you have von Willebrand disease.

Pictures & Images

Blood clot formation

Review Date : 3/21/2008
Reviewed By : Stephen Grund, M.D. Ph.D., Chief of Hematology/Oncology and Director of the George Bray Cancer Center at New Britain General Hospital, New Britain, CT. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.

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