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Lasers Surg Med ; 53(1): 115-118, 2021 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1060012


INTRODUCTION: The COVID-19 pandemic requires us all to re-evaluate aesthetic practices to ensure optimal patient safety during elective procedures. Specifically, energy-based devices and lasers require special consideration, as they may emit plume which has been shown to contain tissue debris and aerosolized biological materials. Prior studies have shown transmission of viruses and bacteria via plume (i.e., HIV and papillomavirus). The purpose of this study was to evaluate plume characteristics of the Er:YAG resurfacing laser (Sciton; Palo Alto, CA) and compare it to the Morpheus8 fractional radiofrequency device (InMode; Lake Forest, CA). METHODS: Five patients who underwent aesthetic resurfacing and/or skin tightening of the face and neck were treated with the Er:YAG (Sciton Joule, Palo Alto, CA) and/or fractional radiofrequency (Morpheus8, Lake Forest, CA) between April 1 and May 11, 2020. Data collected included patient demographics, past medical history, treatment parameters, adverse events, particle counter data, as well as high magnification video equiptment. Patients were evaluated during treatment with a calibrated particle meter (PCE; Jupiter, FL). The particle meter was used at a consistent focal distance (6-12 inches) to sample the surrounding environment during treatment at 2.83 L/min to a counting efficiency of 50% at 0.3 µm and 100% at >0.45 µm. Recordings were obtained with and without a smoke evacuator. RESULTS: Of our cohort (n = 5), average age was 58 years old (STD ±7.2). Average Fitzpatrick type was between 2 and 3. Two patients received Er:YAG fractional resurfacing in addition to fractional radiofrequency during the same treatment session. Two patients had fractional radiofrequency only, and one patient had laser treatment with the Er:YAG only. There were no adverse events recorded. The particle counter demonstrated ambient baseline particles/second (pps) at 8 (STD ±6). During fractional radiofrequency treatment at 1-mm depth, the mean recording was 8 pps (STD ±8). At the more superficial depth of 0.5 mm, recordings showed 10 pps (STD ±6). The Er:YAG laser resurfacing laser had mean readings of 44 pps (STD ±11). When the particle sizes were broken down by size, the fractional radiofrequency device had overall smaller particle sizes with a count of 251 for 0.3 µm (STD ±147) compared with Er:YAG laser with a count of 112 for 0.3 µm (STD ±84). The fractional radiofrequency did not appear to emit particles >5 µm throughout the treatment, however, the Er:YAG laser consistently recorded majority of particles in the range of 5-10 µm. The addition of the smoke evacuator demonstrated a 50% reduction in both particles per second recorded as well as all particle sizes. CONCLUSION: Re-evaluation of the plume effect from aesthetic devices has become important during the COVID-19 pandemic. Further studies are required to characterize viability of COVID-19 viability and transmissibility in plume specimens. Based on this pilot study, we recommend that devices that generate little to no plume such as fractional radiofrequency devices be used in Phase I reopening of practice while devices that generate a visible plume such as Er:YAG laser resurfacing devices be avoided and only used with appropriate personal protective equipment in addition to a smoke evacuator in Phase IV reopening.

COVID-19/transmission , Cosmetic Techniques/instrumentation , Laser Therapy/instrumentation , Lasers, Solid-State/therapeutic use , Radiofrequency Ablation/instrumentation , Skin Aging/radiation effects , Aged , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Cohort Studies , Face , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Neck , Particle Size , Pilot Projects , Risk Assessment
Ear Nose Throat J ; 100(1_suppl): 105S-112S, 2021 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-792910


BACKGROUND: The recent introduction of 445 nm blue laser to office-based laryngology presents potential advantages. These include a desirable combination of cutting and photoangiolytic qualities and a lightweight, shock-resistant design. Despite its increasing use, current evidence is limited to experimental data and case reports. OBJECTIVES: The authors present a case series and overview of office blue laser transnasal flexible laser surgery (TNFLS), considering indications, patient selection, safety, technique, and surgical outcomes. We also review the safety and relevance of TNFLS to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. METHODS: Retrospective case series and narrative review. Our primary outcome measure was preoperative and postoperative Voice Handicap Index (VHI-10) score. Complications were documented by nature and severity. RESULTS: Thirty-six cases of office blue laser TNFLS were performed. A statistically significant improvement in VHI-10 score was demonstrated in cases of recurrent respiratory papillomatosis (RRP) and benign laryngeal lesions causing dysphonia (P < 0.01 and 0.045). Blue laser also proved effective in assisting office biopsy procedures. A minor and self-limiting complication was reported. CONCLUSIONS: Office blue laser TNFLS is safe and effective in the treatment of RRP and a range of benign laryngeal lesions. Future research should compare the efficacy and safety of blue laser with potassium titanyl phosphate laser in office-based treatment of these conditions. Further assessment of the cutting qualities of blue laser, initially in the theater environment, is necessary to refine our understanding of future applications.

COVID-19/prevention & control , Endoscopy/instrumentation , Laryngeal Diseases/surgery , Laser Therapy/instrumentation , Adult , Color , Endoscopy/adverse effects , Female , Humans , Laser Therapy/adverse effects , Male , Middle Aged , Personal Protective Equipment , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2