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Overview of Hemostasis (Clotting Process)

While blood clots are essential to the repair of injured tissues, clots can also put patients at risk of developing thrombosis that may result in a heart attack or an ischemic stroke. In a vessel, clotting occurs in an enzymatic cascade, with the activated form of one clotting factor catalyzing the activation of the next. Thrombin plays a central role in the clotting process, initiating the formation of fibrin monomers from fibrinogen. Thrombin also activates other factors which bind to fibrin molecules and initiates platelet aggregation.