Argon plasma coagulation (APC)

Argon plasma coagulation (APC) is endoscopic non-contact thermal method of hemostasis. APC procedure used to control bleeding from certain lesions in the gastrointestinal tract.

APC involves the use of a jet of ionized argon gas (plasma) directed through a probe which is passed through the endoscope. The probe is placed at some distance from the bleeding lesion, and argon gas is emitted. High-frequency electric current is then conducted through the jet of gas, resulting in coagulation of the bleeding lesion.

APC is used to treat the following conditions:

  • - angiodysplasias in the GI tract
  • - gastric antral vascular ectasia, or watermelon stomach
  • - radiation proctitis
  • - esophageal cancer

These procedures are considered safe but complications or side effects may occur.

Picture: Argon plasma coagulation administered via probe through the colonoscope at angiodysplasia in colon, The patient had multiple colonic angiodysplasia in setting of chronic kidney disease.