NCPD Article
Advanced Practice

Hemostatic Disorders: Physiology, Diagnostics, and Management

Jace D. Johnny

hemostasis, coagulopathy, critical care, hematology, advanced practice
CJON 2021, 25(4), 379-382. DOI: 10.1188/21.CJON.379-382

A defect in any step of hemostasis can lead to potentially catastrophic results. The purpose of this article is to review hemostatic physiology, laboratory studies, and management of platelet and coagulation disorders to familiarize the advanced practice RN (APRN) with this often overlooked but critical system. Learning the underlying mechanisms allows for better understanding of the various disease states that can occur in the hematology and oncology settings.


  • A single alteration in hemostasis can lead to excess bleeding or thrombosis. 
  • Laboratory studies, such as screening assays, can be performed to detect coagulopathy, and additional studies may be needed for diagnosis. 
  • An understanding of the underlying mechanisms of hemostasis is essential for APRNs managing patients with platelet and coagulation disorders.
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