Use of Fibrin Sealant to Reduce Bleeding after Needle Liver Biopsy in an Anticoagulated Canine Model: Work in Progress1

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Needle biopsy of the liver is a common diagnostic procedure. Although relatively safe, bleeding remains a potential complication and may occur more frequently in patients with coagulopathy. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the utility of a fibrin sealant in preventing bleeding after a 15-gauge needle biopsy of the liver in a canine model heparinized to simulate coagulopathy.


Fibrin sealant was delivered to biopsy tract sites in eight dogs anticoagulated with heparin (activated clotting time 387 seconds ± 94) using the same sheath system that was employed to obtain the biopsy specimen.


The results demonstrated complete hemostasis in the sealant-plugged tracts as compared to controls. Continuous bleeding was observed in none of the fibrin sealant-treated sites, compared with all of the control biopsy sites (P = .0078).


These results demonstrate the high degree of efficacy of fibrin sealant delivered through a sheath system in plugging liver biopsy tracts and eliminating bleeding in a severely coagulopathic animal model. This indicates that fibrin sealant use in cutting needle biopsies can reduce major and minor complications associated with the procedure.

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