In a group of dogs in whom fulminant liver failure had been induced, perfusion of blood through activated charcoal resulted in a significantly longer survival than that of a similar group of dogs whose blood was not so treated. An otherwise progressive rise in blood ammonia concentration was halted in the treatment group. In another group of dogs with fulminant liver failure perfusion of blood through the resin Amberlite XAD-2 was associated with a fall in the serum bilirubin concentration and complete clearance from the blood of 14C-labelled sodium glycocholate. Survival in this group of animals was not significantly prolonged. This was due at least in part to the occurrence of haemorrhage due to thrombocytopenia. Platelets adhere to the resin but do not adhere to the same degree to charcoal coated with a thin layer of polymer.
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