Use of CO2 laser and AgClBr infrared transmitting fibers for tympanoplasty: Experiments on animal models

Zeev Zilker, Ben I. Nageris, R. Feinmesser, A. Ravid, N. Kariv, A. Katzir

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


One of the most common ear diseases is Chronic Otitis Media that leads to a tympanic membrane perforation. The treatment of this condition is by a surgical procedure, tympanoplasty that is often done under local or general anesthesia. During this procedure an autologous fascia (e.g. temporal fascia) is applied to close the perforation. Commonly, fixation of the fascia is achieved mostly by Gel-Form. During the last several years various fascia fixation techniques were suggested. These included a welding procedure based on using an Argon laser. The disadvantage of the latter is that the visible Argon laser is not absorbed well by the relatively thin tympanic membrane and the fascia. It does not lead to strong weld and it may heat of the middle ear, causing neural hearing loss. The CO2 laser infrared (IR) radiation is much more suitable for welding of these thin tissues, because of its very high absorption in tissues. There is still a need to deliver this radiation to the weld site using a thin and flexible optical fiber. In this work we have welded fascia on the tympanic membranes of guinea pigs using a CO2 laser. Holes of diameter 2-3 mm were punctured in the membranes and a piece of fascia was placed on the holes. Laser power of the order of 0.5 W was delivered to the fascia using an IR transmitting AgClBr fiber. In experiments done on 11 animals and CO2 laser welding was successfully done on in 15 ears. The success of these preliminary studies in the animal models shows that CO2 laser tympanoplasty could be a very valuable surgical technique.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)287-292
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes
EventProceedings of the 1999 Lasers in Surgery: Advanced Characterization, Therapeutics, and Systems IX - San Jose, CA, USA
Duration: 23 Jan 199924 Jan 1999


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