Safe ligature of large arteries may present a major problem during surgery, particularly if the segment available for tying is a short one. The slipping of sutures and retraction of the transected vessel are the main difficulties encountered. A perusal of the literature shows that little experimental work has been reported on this subject. We have investigated the mechanical problem of hemostasis with particular attention to the technique of ligaturing, as well as the minimum length of vessel which may be left behind and still have safe and adequate control of bleeding.
Experiments were carried out on healthy mongrel dogs utilizing thiopental (Pentothal) anesthesia. Arteries of various diameters were selected, and for purposes of presentation they are divided into three groups: (1) moderate-sized systemic arteries (superior and inferior mesenteric and common iliac arteries); (2) large, thin-walled intrathoracic arteries (pulmonary artery and left brachiocephalic artery), and (3) large, thick-walled artery