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Proceedings Paper

Vitreoretinal surgery and mid-infrared cutting lasers
Author(s): Claudio Azzolini; Pier Giorgio Gobbi; Rosario Brancato
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Paper Abstract

Mid infrared lasers are considered a potential interesting approach for safer and tractionless removal of pathological tissue in vitreoretinal surgery. They include the Erbium:YAG laser emitting at 2.94 micrometers and the semiconductor diode laser at 1.93 micrometer. Due to their capability of inducing photothermal incision and ablation effects, procedures like precise tissue cutting, tissue removal and coagulation can be achieved. Examples of various steps of surgery performed with such laser sources are shown, including retinotomies, retinectomies, and removal of vitreous, epiretinal and subretinal membranes. Advantages and drawbacks of each wavelength are physically and clinically discussed in relation to the surgical procedure type (contact, noncontact), the target tissue and the absorbance of the vitreous substitute adopted (hydrated fluids, silicone oils, perfluorocarbons). According to our three years experience with these cutting lasers, it can be said that: (1) they require special knowledge and the frequent presence of a technician, (2) they surely represent a useful tool in vitreoretinal surgery, but not yet able to entirely replace conventional surgical instrumentation, (3) even if some surgical steps are better performed with such lasers, cost and complexity of use limit their effective diffusion into the clinical practice.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 June 1998
PDF: 4 pages
Proc. SPIE 3246, Ophthalmic Technologies VIII, (1 June 1998); doi: 10.1117/12.309431
Show Author Affiliations
Claudio Azzolini, San Raffaele Hospital/Univ. of Milan (Italy)
Pier Giorgio Gobbi, San Raffaele Hospital/Univ. of Milan (Italy)
Rosario Brancato, San Raffaele Hospital/Univ. of Milan (Italy)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3246:
Ophthalmic Technologies VIII
Pascal O. Rol; Karen Margaret Joos; Fabrice Manns, Editor(s)

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