Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Surgical Procedure Could Save Millions

Date:
February 14, 2005
Source:
Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center
Summary:
A new procedure that could save millions of dollars annually in medical costs – and result in much better patient outcomes and satisfaction – was performed for the first time in the world this week at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center. The procedure removed growths from the airway of a patient using new technology that allows the surgery to be done in the doctor's office with the patient completely awake, and the patient to go home immediately afterward.

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – A new procedure that could save millions of dollars annually in medical costs – and result in much better patient outcomes and satisfaction – was performed for the first time in the world this week at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center.

The procedure removed growths from the airway of a patient using new technology that allows the surgery to be done in the doctor's office with the patient completely awake, and the patient to go home immediately afterward. In the past, this surgery required equipment that could be used only in the operating room with the patient under general anesthesia, and the patient was often required to spend the night in the hospital.

In the procedure this week, two different lasers were used: a carbon-dioxide (CO2) laser delivered by a newly developed hollow-core optical fiber, and a pulsed-dye laser delivered by standard solid optical fiber. Each is guided by a high-resolution video-endoscope, and the entire system is delivered to the patient through a tiny tube that is placed in the nose. It was the world's first use of both lasers in an office-based procedure.

The surgery was performed by Jamie Koufman, M.D., professor of surgery-otolaryngology at Wake Forest Baptist and director of the Center for Voice and Swallowing Disorders (www.thevoicecenter.com).

Koufman explained that the two lasers are complementary. The CO2 first removes the growths in the larynx (voice box) and trachea (airway to the lungs), and the pulsed-dye laser is then used to treat the base of the growths and help prevent recurrence.

This week Koufman removed recurrent respiratory papillomas, warts that cause severe hoarseness and obstruct the trachea; left untreated, the condition can be fatal.

She said that she chose a papilloma case for the trial of the new approach "because this is one of the worst growths to remove. If we can do the worst case, we can do almost everything else."

Koufman said that the same approach will work for 50 to 70 percent of all laryngeal surgeries, including removal of vocal nodules, polyps, cysts, granulomas, and even vascular lesions.

For her alone, Koufman said, that represents hundreds of patients a year. It may eventually be used to treat laryngeal cancer as well.

"We now have the right set of surgical tools to aggressively do unsedated, in-office, laser surgery," said Koufman. "This is the future of this specialty, and there are probably going to be many other applications in other endoscopic specialties. We're talking about potential cost and time savings in the billions of dollars nationally."

The new hollow-core optical fiber and CO2 laser combination was developed by OmniGuide Communications Inc. of Cambridge, Mass., and the pulsed-dye laser was developed by Cynosure Inc. of Chelmsford, Mass. The fiber-optic camera system used to view the surgical site was designed by Pentax Medical Corp. of Montvale, N.J.

The FDA approved the use of the new CO2 laser delivery system for "compassionate use" on this one patient, although general approval is anticipated by summer.

Steve Sheng, Ph.D., OmniGuide's president and CEO said, "We at OmniGuide are excited to see our technology being used for the first time on a human patient. The medical community has waited for a flexible fiber to deliver CO2 laser energy for many years, and we are delighted to offer a solution. We are excited to be working with Dr. Koufman, a creative thought leader who is developing the future standard of care in ENT."

Nick Tsaclas of ENT division manager Pentax Medical said, "This technology is going to revolutionize the field." Koufman added, "The combination of the CO2 laser optical fiber and the pulsed-dye laser is dynamite and dramatically extends our in-office surgical capabilities.

"For 25 years, the CO2 laser has been the 'workhorse' laser of our specialty, but until now it could be used only in the operating room. The difference between that experience and the new procedure," Koufman said, "is like the difference between a horse-drawn cart and a Cadillac.

"We're talking about a paradigm shift for laryngeal and airway surgery. It's easier, it's cheaper, we do a better job, there's less risk, and we do it here in the office. "It's the future of surgery."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center. "New Surgical Procedure Could Save Millions." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 February 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/02/050211082652.htm>.
Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center. (2005, February 14). New Surgical Procedure Could Save Millions. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/02/050211082652.htm
Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center. "New Surgical Procedure Could Save Millions." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/02/050211082652.htm (accessed July 30, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

AFP (July 30, 2014) Pan-African airline ASKY has suspended all flights to and from the capitals of Liberia and Sierra Leone amid the worsening Ebola health crisis, which has so far caused 672 deaths in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Duration: 00:43 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

AP (July 30, 2014) At least 20 New Jersey residents have tested positive for chikungunya, a mosquito-borne virus that has spread through the Caribbean. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Generics Eat Into Pfizer's Sales

Generics Eat Into Pfizer's Sales

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 29, 2014) Pfizer, the world's largest drug maker, cut full-year revenue forecasts because generics could cut into sales of its anti-arthritis drug, Celebrex. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile: iPhone Android Web
      Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins