Blood clot formation
Blood clotting normally can be triggered by injury to a blood vessel. Platelets, tiny cells in the blood, immediately begin to adhere to the damaged part of the vessel and release chemicals to attract even more platelets. A platelet plug is formed, and the vessel stops leaking blood.
Next, small molecules, called clotting factors, cause strands of a blood-borne protein, called fibrin, to stick together and seal the inside of the wound. Eventually, the damaged blood vessel heals, and the blood clot dissolves after a few days.
- Last reviewed on 1/25/2013
- Harvey Simon, MD, Editor-in-Chief, Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School; Physician, Massachusetts General Hospital.
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