Up In Smoke
Protect your providers and patients from the biological and respiratory dangers lurking in laser plume.Karen Appold Surgical lasers have improved efficiency and allow for more targeted, less traumatic treatments. But they have also introduced a new danger to providers and patients: laser plumes. Tissue-vaporizing devices emit plume: smoke, vapor and debris that contain harmful compounds, including aerosolized biological materials.
“When you look at the content emitted during cautery, laser treatments or procedures using ablative ultrasonic devices, 95 percent is water and 5 percent is particulate,” says Patti Owens, BSN, RN, MHA, CMLSO, CNOR, consultant and laser practitioner at Online Laser Training USA and AestheticMed Consulting International in Indio, California, and laser practitioner at Mark Sofonio, MD, FACS, in Rancho Mirage, California. “Through in-depth analysis from a variety of studies stemming back to the 1980s, researchers have identified 150 harmful compounds that may be emitted during...
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