Topical Hemostatic Agents at Time of Obstetric and Gynecologic Surgery: ACOG Committee Opinion, Number 812

Obstet Gynecol. 2020 Oct;136(4):e81-e89. doi: 10.1097/AOG.0000000000004104.


There are three broad categories of hemostatic agents: 1) caustic, 2) physical, and 3) biologic. Because of the paucity of data on the use of topical hemostatic agents in gynecologic and obstetric surgery, indications for use are extrapolated from data on the use of these agents in other types of surgeries and are based on expert opinion. Topical hemostatic agents can be a useful adjunct to assist in the management of intraoperative bleeding in select circumstances. Topical hemostatic agents most commonly are used in situations where the use of electrocautery or sutures for hemostatic control of surgical bleeding is not ideal or safe, including bleeding in areas with nearby vulnerable structures or in the presence of diffuse bleeding from peritoneal surfaces or cut surfaces of solid organs. When managing intraoperative bleeding, there is no substitute for meticulous surgical technique. When possible, the surgeon should attempt to control intraoperative bleeding with sutures, clips, or electrosurgery before the use of hemostatic agents. It is essential for surgeons to understand the appropriate use, contraindications, and cost of these agents in order to make the most informed decision for patient care.

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Topical
  • Adolescent
  • Blood Loss, Surgical / prevention & control*
  • Clinical Decision-Making
  • Female
  • Gynecologic Surgical Procedures / adverse effects
  • Gynecologic Surgical Procedures / methods*
  • Hemostasis, Surgical / methods*
  • Hemostatics* / classification
  • Hemostatics* / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Intraoperative Care / methods
  • Obstetric Labor Complications / surgery*
  • Patient Selection
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians'
  • Pregnancy


  • Hemostatics