Fitness and Physical Activity in Children with Haemophilia

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Haemophilia is a hereditary blood disorder where there is no enough clotting factor VIII or IX (Haemophilia Foundation Australia, 2013). Thus, clotting in people with haemophilia takes longer than usual. Children with haemophilia were, in the past, restricted from sporting activities resulting in high possibilities of becoming overweight and low levels of fitness. The widespread use of prophylaxis especially in developed countries has, however, enabled greater participation in physical activities (Broderick, Herbert, J.Latimer, & Doorn, 2013). This essay examines the fitness effects of physical activities among children with haemophilia.

Research has found that an active lifestyle has health benefits especially for primary and secondary prevention of chronic diseases and premature death (Groen, 2011). According to Groan, patients with haemophilia may have extra benefits for musculoskeletal health including improvement of muscle strength and proprioception, reduction in the number of joint bleeds as well as increase in range of the joint motion. Physical activities not only reduce the risk becoming overweight, but also help boost the strength of bones, muscles and joints.

Studies reveal that children with haemophilia have reduced aerobic fitness (Broderick, Herbert, J.Latimer, & Doorn, 2013). Aerobic fitness depends on genetic factors and physical activity. (Engelbert, Plantinga, Net, Gendereng, Berg, & Helders, 2008). Physical activity is, therefore, essential for boosting aerobic fitness in children with haemophilia.

However, the benefits of physical exercise in children with haemophilia must be balanced with the possible risks, especially the danger of bleeding into the joints. (Broderick, Herbert, J.Latimer, & Doorn, 2013). For this reason, the advice that children with haemophilia receive, regarding the appropriate level of physical activity, may differ even within the same treatment centre.

In conclusion, it is clear that children with haemophilia may boost their fitness by engaging in physical activities like sports. They should however do it to appropriate levels as the benefits have balance with the risk involved.

List of References

Broderick, C. R., Herbert, R. D., J.Latimer, & Doorn, N. (2013). Jounal of the world frderation of Haemophilia. Patterns of physical activity in children with haemophilia , 19, 59-64.

Engelbert, R., Plantinga, M., Net, J. V., Gendereng, F., Berg, M., & Helders, P. (2008). Aerobic Capacity in Children with Hemophilia. The Journal of Pediatrics , 1-9.

Groen, W. G. (2011). Joint Health, Functional Ability and Physial activities in Haemophilia . Utrecht: Uitgevery Box Press.

Haemophilia Foundation Australia. (2013, 10 9). Bleeding Disorders. Retrieved 1 15, 2015, from Heemophilia Foungation Australia Web site: http://www.haemophilia.org.au/bleedingdisorders/haemophilia-2

 

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