Traveling with a bleeding disorder

At some point in your life, you likely will need or want to travel for your job, to visit family, or to go on vacation. Travel always requires some amount of planning; however, people with bleeding disorders also need to be prepared to travel with treatment and be ready should an emergency happen.

Get tips for traveling with a bleeding disorder

Get tips for traveling with a bleeding disorder

The first step is talking to your healthcare provider (HCP) about your plans and making sure you are in a healthy condition to travel.1 There are also vaccinations to consider based on your travel plans—especially for hepatitis A and B.1

Then, you should contact a Hemophilia Treatment Center (HTC) in your destination ahead of time and have an emergency plan in place. Visit the National Hemophilia Foundation (NHF) for a list of centers in the United States or the World Federation of Hemophilia (WFH) to locate HTCs in other countries.1 You may be able to contact those HTCs in advance to find out about whom to contact in an emergency, where to go, if you can bring factor, etc.2

No matter how you travel, you should keep your treatment and necessary supplies with you at all times. That way, you'll have them should an emergency come up while you are in transit to your destination.2

Airplane travel

If you’re traveling by air, there are some additional important things to consider about your emergency bag, such as:

  • Check with the airline to identify carry-on limits and how they relate to carrying on treatment supplies, equipment, mobility aids, or assistive devices (the liquid ban does not apply to properly labeled prescriptions)3
  • Carry all treatment with you in your carry-on3
  • Make sure to have a copy of your current prescription for getting through security3
  • Make sure to have all treatment, supplies, and medical devices clearly labeled with an ID tag containing your name, contact information, and prescription3
  • Avoid packing any products in your checked luggage that shouldn't be exposed to x-rays4
  • Wear a medical ID bracelet and carry a medical ID card with you at all times
Factor product supplies should always be packed in carry-on luggage
    Factor product supplies should never be packed in checked luggage for several reasons:
  • Changes in temperature in an airplane's baggage compartment may affect the strength of the factor4
  • The rough luggage handling could result in broken containers4
  • Your luggage — and, therefore, your treatment — could be lost4
  • You can send larger quantities of any treatment or supplies to your destination by insured mail4

When traveling by airplane, it’s a good idea to arrive early at the airport, in case you experience any delays going through security with your treatment and supplies.

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  1. Travel safe with a bleeding disorder. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Reviewed July 19, 2018. Accessed August 23, 2019.
  2. Susan Hunter; National Hemophilia Foundation. Travel and vacation planning. Published 2013. Accessed August 23, 2019.
  3. Thompson Beckley E. Traveling with medication. HemAware website. Published January 1, 2007. Accessed August 23, 2019.
  4. Travel. Steps for Living website. Accessed August 23, 2019.