The haemostatic system is a complex interaction between the vasculature, cellular components and plasma proteins that interact to maintain haemostasis in the healthy body. The haemostatic system can be further defined as primary, secondary and tertiary haemostasis to better define the interdependent mechanisms that combine to maintain haemostasis. The term 'developmental haemostasis' was first introduced by Maureen Andrews in the 1980s to describe the age-related physiological changes of the coagulation system as it develops progressively over time from fetal, neonatal, paediatric to adult and geriatric systems. This paper will focus on developmental changes in secondary haemostasis, that is, the plasma protein changes that occur with age, particularly during the fetal and neonatal period, when the changes are most marked compared to the adult system.
Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier Ltd.