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Plasma-Based Surgical Instrument Combines Cutting and Coagulation

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 12 Apr 2017
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Image: The J-Plasma generator and hand piece (Photo courtesy of Bovie Medical).
Image: The J-Plasma generator and hand piece (Photo courtesy of Bovie Medical).
A novel device offers increased control of plasma stream tissue dissection, while being able to switch to a monopolar or helium spray coagulation mode with just the push of a button.

The Bovie Medical J-Plasma generator and handpiece with Cool-Coag technology utilizes helium ionization to produce a stable, focused beam of ionized gas that provides a highly defined, cool, plasma stream for soft tissue coagulation and cutting. The plasma stream, formed by passing inert helium over an energizing blade, can cut, coagulate, and ablate tissue at lower temperatures than CO2 lasers, allowing surgical procedures to be performed in delicate areas with reduced damage to surrounding tissue.

The distinctive blade design of the hand piece provides an option to retract or extend the surgical blade, with multiple modes of operation. In the extended configuration, the surgical blade can be used without energy or plasma, similar to a scalpel for incisions and other cutting procedures. When retracted, the device can be used to form the J-Plasma stream for coagulation or blunt dissection. The J-Plasma stream with the blade extended is limited to a maximum of 15mm in length, thus eliminating potential pass-through.

“The development of Bovie’s Cool-Coag technology is a direct result of feedback from surgeons who have used our J-Plasma product for procedures that require greater coagulation capability, specifically in the areas of gynecologic oncology and surgical oncology,” said Robert Gershon, CEO of Bovie Medical. “The unique flexibility of Cool-Coag enables the surgeon to use J-Plasma to perform the most delicate procedures, where precision and low risk of injury to surrounding tissue are paramount and also have the full power of monopolar coagulation to control, pinpoint and diffuse bleeding as needed.”

“This new Cool-Coag technology has the potential to increase usage of the J-Plasma device in many of our most complex cancer procedures. It combines J-Plasma’s ability to be used close to vital structures with minimal collateral damage and standard full monopolar coagulation capability, all in one hand-held instrument,” said Dennis Chi, MD, head of ovarian cancer surgery at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC; New York, NY, USA). “Cool-Coag may also expand the use of J-Plasma in additional procedures and specialties.”

Plasma is one of the four fundamental states of matter, the others being solid, liquid, and gas. When a gas is ionized, electrons are stripped from its atoms, turning it into plasma. The plasma contains charged particles: positive ions and negative electrons or ions, accompanied by dissociation of the atomic bonds. Plasma has so far enjoyed a limited role in surgery due to the high temperatures it creates and resulting harmful effects on body tissue.

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