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Physical Factors in Electrocoaptation of Blood Vessels

Bernard Sigel, MD; Fred L. Hatke, BEE, MEE
Arch Surg. 1967;95(1):54-58. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1967.01330130056011.
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CERTAIN animal tissues may be fused together by heat. The surgical application of this fact dates to antiquity with the use of cautery to seal blood vessels in order to prevent hemorrhage. More recently, heat sealing of blood vessels has been achieved by converting electrical energy into heat. It was found that electric currents above 10,000 cycles per second would not produce muscular contractions1 and would be transformed to heat as a result of tissue impedance.

Electrocoagulation of blood vessels has become a widely employed technique in surgery. While in certain circumstances it is less safe than ligation, there are areas in the body where the ligature cannot be easily applied and electrocoagulation has become the main means of providing hemostasis. Because electrocoagulation can be effected more rapidly than ligation, it is often used instead of ligation on small and accessible blood vessels to save time at operation. Despite


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