Complete Guide on Hemostat Origin, Different Types, and Practical Uses

Complete Guide on Hemostat – Its Origin, Different Types, and Practical Uses

Hemostat is a Surgeon’s Secret Weapon in the battle against bleeding. It is a multi-functional and versatile tool used in medicine and surgery. It is crucial in controlling bleeding and handling wounds and lesions during surgical procedures. From classical times, it has been an essential part of surgeries and other medical procedures and has served humanity by saving thousands of lives and securing numberless wounds.

Hemostat comes in various shapes, sizes, and types and is made of different materials, from stainless steel to plastic. They perform multiple functions such as clamping, grasping, holding, and exploring deep surgical sites. Let’s dive into the complete guide on hemostats, their origin, types, practical uses, and much more.

What does Hemostat mean?

Hemostat is a surgical tool commonly used in the medical field to stop bleeding and arrest hemorrhage. It is a crucial tool that helps nurses and surgeons during any medical emergency or a high-profile surgery. 

Hemostat is derived from the word Hemostasis which has a Greek route- Heme means Blood, and Stasis means To Stop. 

Hemostasis is the process of preventing or stopping bleeding, and Hemostat is the tool used for this mission. It does this by securing tissues or by grasping and holding the edges of a wound in place.

Uses of Hemostat

Hemostat is one of the most common surgical instruments and has the following pivotal functions in a surgical procedure;

1 # Controlling the bleeding:

An essential function of a hemostat is to control the bleeding to prevent hemorrhage. Uncontrolled bleeding can result in severe medical conditions such as anemia, hypovolemic shock, and organ failure. So Hemostat functions to prevent these acute disorders by stopping bleeding, and it accomplishes this by grabbing wounds and lesions.

Hemostat is used to stop bleeding

2 # Clamping the blood vessels:

 Hemostats are used for clamping and securing blood vessels to seize the blood loss in any surgical action. It is difficult to clamp small blood vessels during surgical procedures, but Hemostat works best. It not only reduces blood loss but also encourages healing.

3 # Grasping the tissue:

Grasping the tissue tightly is the most essential part of any precise surgical method, and hemostats are the surgeon’s best choice. Hemostats are used for grasping the tissue and superficial fascia, the first layer of connective and adipose tissue right under your skin.

4 # Dissecting the issue:

Tissue dissection removes diseased or damaged tissue or extracts tissue for research purposes. Hemostats are an excellent option for tissue dissection. For this purpose, various dissecting hemostats are available with modified jaws, and serrated edges, and the pick of a suitable Hemostat depends on the type of tissue to be dissected.

5 # Exploring deeper surgical sites: 

During surgical procedures, surgeons explore deeper surgical sites to diagnose and remove tumors. It is a sensitive process, and hemostats are the finest choice. They are commonly used by surgeons in analyzing and visualizing deeper areas of the operating sites.

How do you use a Hemostatic Clamp?

Proper use of a hemostatic clamp is essential for the patient’s safety and the mission’s success. Even minor negligence can result in severe damage. Here’s a simple and quick step-by-step guide to using a hemostat;

Step # 1: Prepare the Hemostatic Clamp:

The first and foremost important step of using a hemostatic clamp is its preparation. Preparing a hemostatic clamp involves sterilizing it properly with an antiseptic solution to avoid infectious diseases. Also, check that the jaws are free of debris.

Step # 2: Holding of Hemostat: 

Hemostats are held in a tripod fashion using the thumb and the ring finger, with the index finger extended down the shaft. All the hemostats are designed for right-handed individuals.

Step # 3: Opening and positioning of jaws: 

Open the Hemostat jaws by unlocking the clamp’s mechanism and make sure that its clamp works appropriately and is debris free. Now carefully position the jaws around the area to be manipulated in such a manner that allows for effective bleeding control.

 Step # 4: Clamping the Tissue

For clamping the tissue, first, lock the clamp of the Hemostat. The ratchet mechanism keeps the hemostat jaws tightly approximated and is sealed by pushing the thumb. Use the clamp carefully on the desired area or tissue to secure the bleeding. Hold the clamp tightly until the bleeding has stopped. While using the Hemostat, don’t grasp the tissue from the very tip of it but rather slightly proximal to the tip.

Step # 5: Releasing the clamp: 

When you are done with your task, release the clamp attentively. Look carefully for the bleeding to stop. If bleeding recommences, you can reapply the clamp to stop it. Using a hemostat in a medical setting is only advised if you are a professional to avoid injury. Always sterilize the hemostatic clamp after using it.

Who invented the Hemostat?

The history of surgical instruments began in 10.000 bc by using stone knives to perform general surgery. Later, evolution continued, and modern surgical instrumentation started with the introduction of stainless steel. 

The modern Hemostat was developed in the late 19th century, and its credit belongs to many persons, the premier of which is Jules-Émile Péan, and since then, many surgeons have made changes to it. Today hemostats of different sizes, shapes, and types are widely used in the medical profession to prevent blood loss successfully.

What is Hemostat made of?

Hemostats are made of various materials, such as stainless steel and plastic. The choice of the type of Hemostat depends on the mission to be performed. Below are some materials used for the manufacturing of hemostats;

Stainless Steel Hemostat: 

Stainless steel is the most commonly used material for manufacturing surgical instruments, including hemostats. Stainless steel is best known for its corrosion resistance and hypoallergic properties, making it the best choice for hemostats. Stainless steel hemostats are highly durable and are specially designed for intricate work in tight spaces and for holding objects tightly without cutting them.

Titanium Hemostats: 

Titanium is a highly biocompatible and lightweight metal. Titanium hemostats are best for easy handling during surgical procedures. They have a low risk of causing allergic diseases and are primarily used in procedures requiring a delicate touch. But they are more expensive than stainless steel hemostats.

Plastic Hemostats:

 Plastic hemostats are less common and are primarily used in dental procedures. The best advantage of plastic hemostats is that they are soft and flexible; thus, they don’t cause any tissue damage. But they are not durable, and you may need to replace them more frequently.

How does Hemostat Work?

Hemostats have special features to clamp the blood vessels and arrest blood loss. They are equipped with two arms connected by a hinge mechanism to hold and lock the clamp around the working vessel or tissue. The ring handles feature a ratcheted locking mechanism to hold jaws tightly in place and allow the surgeons to work freely without worrying about additional bleeding.

Hemostat Parts

Hemostats can have different numbers of jaws and ratchets depending on the type. Straight-jawed hemostats are used in surgeries to serve finer work in small surgical sites. Some hemostats have fully-serrated jaws, and others have half-serrated jaws. Both Kelly and Crile hemostats are equal in length but have different types of jaws, and they two serve various functions in surgical procedures.