Bronchial artery embolization (BAE) is the treatment of choice in the majority of patients with severe hemoptysis. However, this procedure may be unavailable and even fail or be counterindicated in 4-13% of cases. In these cases, the efficacy of fibrinogen-thrombin (FT) instilled endoscopically as treatment for massive hemoptysis was assessed. Between August 1993 and February 1996 a prospective clinical study was performed. FT instillation was indicated in all patients with severe hemoptysis (> 150 ml/12 h) in whom BAE had failed, was counterindicated or not available. FT was instilled endoscopically. Patients were followed up until June 2001. Eleven of 101 patients (11%) with hemoptysis > 150 ml/12 h in whom BAE was not possible or proved ineffective were included. The severe hemoptysis was controlled immediately in all cases. During the follow-up period (mean: 39.4 months), early relapse of the severe hemoptysis occurred in two patients (18%) and a long-time relapse in one. Mean procedure duration was 3 min and no attributable complications were observed in any case. In conclusion, these results suggest that topical treatment with FT could be considered in the initial endoscopic evaluation of patients with severe hemoptysis while awaiting BAE or surgery, or as alternative treatment to arterial embolization when the latter is not available, has proved ineffective or is counterindicated.