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A Journal on Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery,
Plastic Reconstructive Surgery, Otoneurosurgery

Indexed/Abstracted in: EMBASE, Scopus




Otorinolaringologia 2000 September;50(3):133-7


language: Italian

Radiosurgery versus electrosurgery and Laser CO2 in ENT. Histological and ultrastructural study

Restivo S., Valentino B., Gallina S., Farina E., Speciale R., Cupido G.

Università degli Studi - Palermo Dipartimento di Discipline Chirurgiche Anatomiche e Oncologiche Sezione di Anatomia Umana *Istituto di Clinica Otorinolaringoiatrica Clinica O.R.L. Base (Direttore: Prof. S. Restivo)


Background. Radiosurgery is a recently introduced method in the field of ENT. Using high frequency radio waves, this technique allows tissues to be resected and/or coagulated with virtually no damage. The radio waves heat the cell water leading to vaporisation and molecular dissolution. Resection is achieved with heat generated by the resistance the tissues offer to the radio wave emitted through a thin electrode. In this way the heat disintegrates and volatilises the cells in the trajectory of the radio waves, resecting the tissue with extraordinary accuracy.
The aim of this study was to acquire a more detailed knowledge of the histological characteristics of the skin sectioned using radiofrequency, electrosurgical knives and Laser CO2.
Methods. The fragments were collected during tympanoplastic surgery, immersed in Bouin’s fixative, dehydrated in the series of alcohol and studied using an optic and electron scanning microscope.
Results. The results show that the epidermis is more or less whole using all methods, whereas the dermis reveals changes in organisation that are clear in the section using an electrosurgical knife and even more so with laser CO2.
Conclusions. The authors conclude that maintenance of the structural integrity of the sectioned skin using radiofrequency surgery allows better cicatrisation and easier and more accurate sutures, with clear cosmetic and functional advantages, reduced postoperative pain and shorter hospitalisation times.

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