Investigators working to determine speed of blood clotting

Activated clotting time (ACT) critical during major surgeries

Investigators at the Medical College of Georgia and Augusta University Health have tested some common platforms that can quickly determine the speed of blood clotting, or activated clotting time (ACT) to allow them to act quickly and expertly during major surgeries.

“It’s like walking on a knife’s edge,” Dr. Thomas Z. Thompson, a third-year pathology resident at the Medical College of Georgia and AU Health. “You have to really get it within a certain range.”

Their investigation was recently published in Laboratory Medicine and was instrumental in establishing the iSTAT platform, which allows not only a quick, bedside determination of ACT but can also assess such other key internal levels of sodium levels in the blood, a key element in streamlining patient care.

Caregivers now know how much of a common coagulant, such as heparin, is inhibiting the ability to clot so they might be able to make the necessary adjustments. The point of care approach may be more costly than simple lab testing, but it is shown to decrease the need for blood transfusions down the line.

SOURCE: Medical Xpress

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