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Ultrasound Med Biol. 1998 Jul;24(6):903-10.

Hemostasis of punctured blood vessels using high-intensity focused ultrasound.

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Bioengineering, University of Washington, Seattle 98195, USA.


The hemorrhagic complications of vascular injury can be significant. We report on the use of high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) to stop the hemorrhage of punctured blood vessels in pigs. Two HIFU transducers with frequencies of 3.5 and 2.0 MHz, each equipped with a water-filled conical housing, were used. Major blood vessels (femoral artery and vein, axillary artery, carotid artery and jugular vein), 2-10 mm in diameter, of anesthetized pigs were exposed surgically and punctured with 14- and 18-gauge needles to produce moderate to profuse bleeding. Complete hemostasis was achieved in less than 3 min of HIFU treatment in most blood vessels, and all vessels were patent after the treatment. Both HIFU frequencies were effective in producing hemostasis. Gross examination of the HIFU-treated vessels showed a consistent hardening of the soft tissue surrounding the blood vessels, providing a seal for the puncture hole. Microscopic examination of the vessels showed a remarkably localized HIFU treatment, resulting in coagulation of the adventitia, and an extensive fibrin network around the vessels and in the puncture hole. The vessel walls exhibited focal swelling, without evidence of irreversible injury. HIFU may provide a useful method for achieving hemostasis of punctured and traumatized blood vessels in a variety of clinical settings.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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