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Open Access Highly Accessed Review

Hereditary thrombophilia

Salwa Khan1* and Joseph D Dickerman2

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Pediatrics, University of Maryland, Suite N5W56 22 S. Greene St. Baltimore, MD 21201, USA

2 Department of Pediatrics, University of Vermont College of Medicine, D201D Given Building 89 Beaumont Avenue Burlington, Vermont 05405, USA

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Thrombosis Journal 2006, 4:15  doi:10.1186/1477-9560-4-15

Published: 12 September 2006

Abstract

Thrombophilia can be defined as a predisposition to form clots inappropriately. Thrombotic events during infancy and childhood are increasingly recognized as a significant source of mortality and morbidity. The predisposition to form clots can arise from genetic factors, acquired changes in the clotting mechanism, or, more commonly, an interaction between genetic and acquired factors. Since the turn of the last century, there has been extensive research focusing on both the genetic and acquired causes of thrombophilia, with particular focus on clotting events in the venous circulation. This review describes clinically relevant aspects of genetic venous thrombophilia, which include well-established, lesser known, and suggested causes of inherited thrombophilias.