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Transl Vis Sci Technol ; 10(12): 17, 2021 10 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1467777


Purpose: The purpose of this study was to discuss the propensity of aerosol and droplet generation during vitreoretinal surgery using high speed imaging amidst the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Methods: In an experimental set up, various steps of vitreoretinal surgery were performed on enucleated goat eyes. The main outcome measures were visualization, quantification of size, and calculation of aerosol spread. Results: During intravitreal injection, insertion of cannulas, lensectomy, and vitrectomy with both 23 and 25-gauge instruments, with either valved or nonvalved cannulas, aerosols were not visualized which was confirmed on imaging. Although there was no aerosol generation during active fluid air exchange (FAE), there was bubbling and aerosol generation at the exit port of the handle during passive FAE. Under higher air pressure, with reused valved and fresh nonvalved cannulas, aerosol generation showed a trajectory 0.4 to 0.67 m with droplet size of 200 microns. Whereas removing cannulas or suturing under active air infusion (35 mm Hg and above) aerosols were noted. Conclusions: Based on the above experiments, we can formulate guidelines for safe vitrectomy during COVID-19. Some recommendations include the use of valved cannulas, avoiding passive FAE or to direct the exit port away from the surgeon and assistant, and to maintain the air pressure less than or equal to 30 mm Hg. Translational Relevance: In the setting of the COVID-19 pandemic, the risk from virus laden aerosols, as determined using an experimental setup, appears to be low for commonly performed vitreoretinal surgical procedures.

COVID-19 , Vitreoretinal Surgery , Aerosols , Humans , Pandemics , Risk Assessment , SARS-CoV-2
Phys Fluids (1994) ; 33(9): 092109, 2021 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1434215


Noninvasive ocular diagnostics demonstrate a propensity for droplet generation and present a potential pathway of distribution for pathogens such as the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. High-speed images of the eye subjected to air puff tonometry (glaucoma detection) reveal three-dimensional, spatiotemporal interaction between the puff and tear film. The interaction finally leads to the rupture and breakup of the tear film culminating into sub-millimeter sized droplet projectiles traveling at speeds of 0.2 m/s. The calculated droplet spread radius ( ∼ 0.5 m) confirms the likelihood of the procedure to generate droplets that may disperse in air as well as splash on instruments, raising the potential of infection. We provide a detailed physical exposition of the entire procedure using high fidelity experiments and theoretical modeling. We conclude that air puff induced corneal deformation and subsequent capillary waves lead to flow instabilities (Rayleigh-Taylor, Rayleigh-Plateau) that lead to tear film ejection, expansion, stretching, and subsequent droplet formation.

Indian J Ophthalmol ; 69(3): 734-738, 2021 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1089035


PURPOSE: The study uses principles of liquid and gas mechanics to verify and quantify the generation of aerosols in oculoplastic procedures, namely surgery using a scalpel, electrosurgical device, and a mechanized drill. METHODS: Surgical techniques were performed ex vivo using the electrosurgical device, scalpel, and mechanized drill on the muscle and bone of commercially available chicken. The liquid and gas dynamics were observed using a high-speed high-resolution Photron SA5 camera (0.125 to 8 ms temporal resolution, 0.016 to 0.054 mm/pixel spatial resolution) and stroboscopic lighting (Veritas 120 E LED Constellation). The analysis was performed using in-house algorithms and ImageJ software. RESULTS: The use of a mechanized drill at 35000 rpm and a 3 mm fluted burr generated aerosol with particle size 50 to 550 microns with a spread of 1.8 m radius. Surgical smoke was generated by an electrosurgical device in both cutting and coagulation modes. Dispersion of the smoke could be controlled significantly by the use of suction, mean smoke spread ratio being 0.065 without suction and 0.002 with use of suction within 2 cm. CONCLUSION: The quantification of the aerosol generation will help surgeons take practical decisions in their surgical techniques in the pandemic era.

Aerosols/adverse effects , COVID-19/epidemiology , Diagnostic Imaging/methods , Eye Diseases/epidemiology , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Ophthalmologic Surgical Procedures/methods , Pandemics , Personal Protective Equipment , Plastic Surgery Procedures/adverse effects , Risk Assessment/methods , Comorbidity , Eye Diseases/diagnosis , Eye Diseases/surgery , Humans , India , SARS-CoV-2