- Hemostasis refers to the processes that stop loss of blood following disruption of the vasculature. Hemostasis can be thought of as occurring in three overlapping stages that occur with different kinetics: Vasoconstriction, Platelet Plugging, and Coagulation. It is important to note that these stages do not occur independently, but rather serve to strengthen and modulate one another.
- Ultimately, blood-loss prevention antagonizes blood flow; therefore, although these mechanisms are critical following vascular trauma, they can be highly dangerous if activated inappropriately. Such activation in uninjured vessels leads to thrombosis, and loss of downstream perfusion. While our discussion will only outline the highly complex regulation involved in hemostasis, we should be aware of the impressive balancing act that exists between preventing genuine blood loss and avoiding blockage of uninjured vessels.