Topical hemostatic agents in surgery: review and prospects.

ABSTRACT Hemostasis plays a critical and fundamental role in all surgical procedures. Its management has several key points that start with good operative technique and adequate anesthetic support. Certain situations, such as severe bleeding resulting from penetrating trauma, do not depend exclusively on the control of the surgical team and require the support of new solutions that decrease or control bleeding. Since ancient times, a hallmark of medicine has been to act in the control of hemorrhage, and more recently, in the facilitation of hemostasis by the application of topical agents by either manual compression or modern agents. In the last decade, the number of different topical hemostatic agents has grown dramatically. For the modern surgeon to choose the right agent at the right time, it is essential that he/she understands the mechanisms of action, the effectiveness and the possible adverse effects related to each agent. Thus, the great variety of topical hemostatics, coupled with the absence of a review article in the national literature on this topic, stimulated us to elaborate this manuscript. Here we report a detailed review of the topical hemostatic agents most commonly used in surgical specialties.