Laser induced fragmentation of salivary stones: an in vitro comparison of two different, clinically approved laser systems.Lasers Surg Med. 2008 Apr; 40(4):257-64.LS
Clinical laser lithotripsy in urology promises a good fragmentation combined with a minimal risk of soft tissue damage and low medical complications. This in vitro study investigates the fragmentation of salivary stones by means of two clinically used laser systems.
MATERIALS AND METHODS
The effects induced by the FREDDY laser (WOM, Germany, lambda = 532 nm/1,064 nm, E(pulse) = 120-160 mJ/pulse) and the Ho:YAG (AURIGA, StarMedTec, Germany, lambda = 2,100 nm, E(pulse) = 300-800 mJ/pulse) on clinical salivary calculi (n = 15) and on salivary gland tissue were investigated using clinical laser parameter settings. All experiments were performed in an under water experimental set-up using flexible fibres (core diameter 230 microm) positioned in front of each specimen. In order to assess fragmentation efficacy, each stone was placed on a grating (rhombic mash-diameter 1-3 mm). The fragmentation rate was calculated with respect to the energy applied (mg/J), to the number of pulses (mg/pulse), and to the time needed (mg/minute). In addition the composition of the stones were analysed spectrographically. The soft tissue interaction on human salivary duct mucosa was examined histologically (HE-staining).
Spectrographic composition of the salivary stones showed a two component ratio of protein/carbonate apatite varying between 5/95 and 25/75. Stones treated by the Ho:YAG were vaporised in a milling-like process, while using the FREDDY laser stones are cracked into pieces and fragmentation failed in two cases. The fragmentation rates achieved by the FREDDY laser were greater than those of the Ho:YAG laser, but fragments mainly bigger. A dependency on the composition of the stones could not be found. Laser pulse effects on soft tissue were found slightly beyond the mucosa.
This study clearly demonstrated the different processes of destroying salivary stones using two different laser systems. While the Ho:YAG vaporises the calculi in a more milling and soft sense, the FREDDY shows a more cracking and explosive destruction. Although both laser systems showed little direct risk to the surrounding tissue, it has to be proven whether cracked and accelerated particles could cause harm to soft tissue. With respect to this, further in vitro studies and clinical treatments in selected cases are needed to proof these results.