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Platelets: Homeostasis and Clotting

Platelets: Homeostasis and Clotting

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This lesson will identify the role of platelets in maintaining homeostasis and preventing major blood loss.

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Tutorial
Terms to Know
Embolism

A circulating mass in the blood, examples: fatty embolus or an air embolus.

Hemophilia

A group of hereditary disorders that prevent clots from being formed.

Hemostasis

The process of controlling/stopping bleeding from a broken vessel; platelets are the main component of hemostasis by working with the plasma protein fibrinogen to form a blood clot.

Platelets

Are also called thrombocytes, platelets are actually cell fragments of bone marrow cells called megakaryocytes. Platelets are used to form blood clots to control hemostasis.

Stroke

When blood flow is obstructed to an area of the brain causing brain tissue to become ischemic; if blood flow is not immediately restored brain damage will ensue.

Thrombin

An enzyme in the blood that plays a critical role in hemostasis by converting the plasma protein fibrinogen into fibrin; fibrin secures platelets as they plug a damaged vessel (platelet plug) and the end result is a clot.

Thrombosis

The formation of a blood clot within a vessel which obstructs blood flow through the vessel.