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The FDA has approved the first and only slow-setting fibrin sealant to be used as a tissue adhesive for adhering autologous skin grafts to surgically prepared wound beds. The product is indicated to treat burns in adult and pediatric patients.


Fibrin sealants contain the proteins fibrinogen and thrombin, which are important to blood clotting. Called Artiss, the new sealant contains a lower concentration of thrombin than similar products. This buys the surgeon more time to position the graft before it adheres to the patient's tissue (about 60 seconds, compared with 5 to 10 seconds with rapid-setting fibrin sealants). Artiss also contains a synthetic protein called aprotinin that delays the breakdown of blood clots. A clinical trial showed that Artiss is as safe and effective as surgical staples for attaching skin grafts on wound sites.


Adverse reactions in patients treated with Artiss included bleeding and fluid collection in the tissues, which are common problems with all skin grafts. For more information, visit the manufacturer's Web site at http://www.baxter.com.