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  • Writer's pictureDr. Steven Horwitz

Hemostatic Agents - A MUST in every First Aid Kit


The paper entitled A Narrative Review of Different Hemostatic Materials in Emergency Treatment of Trauma gives us an excellent update on Hemostatic agents in the treatment of trauma.


"Hemostatic materials are very important for the treatment of a large number of bleeding trauma patients in battlefield and disaster environments. Different types of hemostatic materials need to be used for emergency hemostasis according to different injury parts and severity."


"Massive blood loss is one of the main causes of death caused by war and disaster accidents. 80% of the deaths of patients occur within 1 hour after trauma. If the bleeding can be stopped immediately or early, the mortality can be reduced to 20%∼30% [1]"


"There are many kinds of hemostatic materials [1017], which can be divided into patch type (including gauze, nonwoven fabric, filaments, sponges, and membranes), particle powder type (including mineral hemostatic particles and hemostatic powders), fluid sealing type (including biological glue, chemical glue, wax, and liquid foam), and tactile expansion type (including compressed cotton and solid glue)."


"Patch hemostatic materials are a kind of sheet-like materials that cover wounds, adhere to bleeding sites, and prevent further damage. The main hemostatic mechanism of patch hemostatic materials is to close the wound by fitting and covering with the damaged tissue, exert certain pressure on the wound, and form an effective physical barrier, and then use its internal pore structure to quickly absorb blood and water, activate the rapid aggregation of platelets, so as to achieve the hemostatic effect [11, 12] (Figure 1). The patch type hemostatic material is easy to use, can cover the wound quickly, and is well used in the body surface pressing wound. Currently, hemostatic patches in clinical use include hemostatic gauze, chitosan dressing (hemcon), and collagen sponge (gelfix)."


"Granular powder hemostatic materials are also a kind of materials that have been studied earlier, usually small particle size materials obtained by grinding and freeze-drying after raw materials are synthesized. The granular powder hemostatic material can better cover wounds of different shapes and depths."


"Fluid sealing hemostatic materials are new materials that have emerged in recent years. These materials are usually stored in the form of liquid. After contacting the wound by local injection/spraying, they form glue or film to close the wound. Its mechanism of action mainly relies on the high adhesion of the material to closely combine with the damaged tissue and close the wound."


We recommend having, at minimum, some Quikclot, in your kit. Another great product is a wound gel like Rapid Seal. The ability to control bleeding quickly is a win!

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