Coagulation: what is this process?

Coagulation: what is this process?

Coagulation is the process by which the blood moves from a natural liquid state to a gel state, forming a clot. A clot is a mass of blood formed during the agglomeration of platelets, blood cells and certain proteins.

It is important to distinguish the clot from a thrombus or embolus. The word thrombus refers to a clot that adheres to the wall of a blood vessel. In addition, emboli are clots that, as they circulate in the blood, stop in another part of the body blocking the blood circulation.

Coagulation is a vital process in life. In fact, all mammals have a similar coagulation system. That's why we explain in this article everything you need to know about this process.

What is coagulation?

To understand coagulation, we must first understand the physiology of blood. In the natural state, the blood circulates without going into this gelatinous state. The walls of the blood vessels are healthy and no substance is activated to cause clots.

At this stage, the anticoagulation and coagulation processes are in equilibrium. These are the two processes in which many proteins responsible for ensuring this balance, called hemostasis, are involved.

When a blood vessel is damaged, there is a chain reaction and activation of a series of proteins leading to clot formation. This chain is called the coagulation cascade.

In this chain, more than 10 different proteins intervene. They are called coagulation factors. They are normally found in the blood plasma.

The process of coagulation

Blood and coagulation

In summary, here is what happens during coagulation:

First, there is a small tear in the wall of the blood vessel: it causes hemorrhage. The term "haemorrhage" is simply used to describe the loss of blood vessels, regardless of the amount
Then the blood vessels contract: this happens to limit the flow of blood and prevent it from escaping through the wound
Platelets are activated: they are parts of cells that circulate in the blood. They agglomerate in the area where the injury occurred, forming a tampon. At this point, one of the most important coagulation factors occurs: the von Willebrand factor
Finally, the rest of the coagulation factors activate the production of fibrin: fibrin is a strong substance that allows the formation of a type of network that firmly holds the buffer.
When the wound heals, the tampon that has formed (the clot) dissolves. This is how the equilibrium is restored and the ship returns to its natural state.

What diseases are they linked to coagulation?

As we mentioned, coagulation is a fundamental process for life. When one of the elements does not work, we can see many diseases. Here are some examples.

Von Willebrand disease

The process of blood clotting
This is the most common disorder associated with coagulation. People suffering from this disease have a problem with the eponymous coagulation factor. As we mentioned, it is the one that allows platelets to agglomerate.

It is estimated that 1% of the population suffers. The symptoms are nevertheless mild and few people are diagnosed. Here are some of the symptoms:

Bleeding from the nose that takes time to stop
Abundant menstruation in women
Excessive bleeding after injury or blood in urine and stool
Pathology of coagulation: hemophilia
It is a coagulation disorder in which the person does not have factor VIII or IX. These people tend to bleed long after an injury. Indeed, their blood does not coagulate normally.

It is an inherited disease that can be very serious. In case of internal bleeding, the organs and tissues can be damaged and put the life of the patient in danger.

Surprisingly, it is the disorder that many members of the royal families of the nineteenth century have known. For example, the son of the last Russian tsars suffered from this disease. Thus, many studies have sought to discover its genetic origin.

In conclusion

Coagulation is a complex process that keeps us alive. It is important to study how this works to treat people with a bleeding problem.


Seorang Blogger pemula yang sedang belajar