THE FACTS ABOUT VWD
When it Appears
It is important to remember that von Willebrand's Disease can manifest itself at any age. The mean age for a first diagnosed bleed in 200 clinically affected Dobermans in an American study was 4.6 years, the median age being 4.0 years. A clinically affected dog is at lifelong risk to have another episode, but this may not necessarily happen.
How it Appears:
disease has varying levels of severity and symptoms. Some clinically affected
are much more grievously affected than others. For example, it can cause excessive bleeding during teething, or excessive bleeding during or after surgery. vWD can also cause extended healing times following injury or surgery. It can cause spontaneous or non-induced bleeding from the mucosal membranes, such as the nose and mouth or the urogenital tract. Bleeding into the joints, pericardium, periocular space and body cavities are some other examples. Females
in estrus may experience excessive bleeding.
DNA Affected? What Does that Mean?
The best way
to deal with vWD is to be aware of it. If you have a dog that has tested
remember that this dog has two copies of the vWD gene and that the label "DNA Affected" does
not necessarily mean that the dog will ever experience clinical symptoms
of the disease. Dogs that test as DNA Carrier or Clear will not experience
bleeding problems associated with vWD. Be sure that other causes are ruled
out by a vet in any case of a DNA Affected dog having bleeding irregularities.
The DNA result is NOT a diagnosis of clinical vWD, but a tool.
Page 1: Introduction - Page 3: Determining Risk