Treating von Willebrand disease

Every instance of von Willebrand disease (VWD) is different. With different types and severity levels, VWD treatment approaches should be unique for each person.1,2

Considerations for VWD treatment

When it comes to treatment for VWD, you and your doctor will most likely take into account the type and severity of VWD that you have, how you’ve responded to previous therapy, and your other medications and conditions.1

If you’re a woman with VWD who plans to become pregnant, consider seeing a doctor who specializes in high-risk pregnancies, and going to a hospital that has a hematologist (a doctor who specializes in bleeding disorders) on staff for prenatal care and delivery.2

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Types of treatment for VWD

Treatment for VWD depends upon the type and severity of the disease. One or more treatment options may be used to manage bleeding.1 The most common treatments are:

ANTIFIBRINOLYTIC (clot-stabilizing) medications

These medications may be prescribed before or after surgical procedures and help slow the breakdown of blood clots.2

Vasopressin Analogues

This injection or nasal spray is usually used to treat type 1 and some subtypes of type 2 VWD. This medication stimulates the release of von Willebrand factor (VWF).2,3

Factor Replacement Therapy

This treatment contains VWF. It is used to treat people with more severe forms of VWD or some people with milder forms of VWD. Factor replacement therapy is infused (injected into the bloodstream) to replace the missing VWF.2


Hormones found in contraceptives can boost the levels of VWF. These may be prescribed for women to help reduce heavy menstrual bleeding.2

A person's unique needs will drive the treatment regimen2,4


Treatments given when needed (on-demand) to control major and minor bleeds in all locations.


Prophylaxis treatment is taken routinely to prevent or reduce the number of bleeds, rather than waiting for a bleed to happen and treating it on demand.

Surgery Treatment

A treatment given to prevent excessive bleeding during surgery by raising a patient’s VWF levels.

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Hear Hannah talk about her journey with von Willebrand disease

Keep exploring

Doctor going through a checklist with the patient.

Talking to your doctor about VWD

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Use the VWD discussion guide with your doctor

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  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. What is von Willebrand disease? Accessed February 12, 2023.
  2. Canadian Hemophilia Society. All about von Willebrand disease…for people with von Willebrand disease and their families. Accessed February 12, 2023.
  3. Bharati KP, Prashanth UR. Von Willebrand disease: an overview. Indian J Pharm Sci. 2011;73(1):7-16. doi:10.4103/0250-474X.89751
  4. National Organization for Rare Disorders. Hemophilia A. Accessed February 12, 2023.