A non-invasive method has been developed for the study of tissue surface fibrinolytic activity during surgery in man. Surface exudate was collected using a filter-paper disc which was then applied directly to a fibrin plate or used to prepare a euglobulin fraction. The method detected the intraoperative increase in fibrinolytic activity. At 45 minutes from the start of surgery the increase in lytic activity for tissues was four to eight times greater than that of venous blood taken simultaneously. The technique may be used to compare regional differences in tissue fibrinolysis, to determine the effect of excess local fibrinolysis on postoperative bleeding, and to study the relation between low fibrinolytic activity and postoperative adhesion formation.
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