Electrosurgical devices, lasers cited as most common igniters of operating room fires

Oct 06, 2009

While operating room fires can occur in a variety of clinical settings, it is the use of lasers and electrosurgical devices that are most likely to cause them. Those are the findings in new research presented at the 2009 American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF) Annual Meeting & OTO EXPO, in San Diego, CA.

The study's authors discovered that among a group of 349 otolaryngologists, a quarter (25.2%) had at least witnessed an during the course of their career, and several had witnessed multiple fires (sometimes as many as five). A large majority of the fires (81%) occurred when supplemental oxygen was being used, and the most common sources of ignition were electrosurgical units (59%), lasers (32%), and light cords (7%).

In order to minimize the risk of fire, the authors conclude that surgeons, particularly otolaryngologists (because of the nature of the surgical procedures they perform), must familiarize themselves with the common scenarios in which fires might occur.

Source: American Academy of Otolaryngology

Explore further: Amgen tops Street 4Q forecasts

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

PC program may help teach new surgeons

Sep 22, 2008

New computer game technology can help educate otolaryngology medical students who don't have any anatomical knowledge or surgical experience, according to new research presented at the 2008 American Academy of Otolaryngology ...

Published ENT surgical innovations fall drastically

Sep 25, 2008

The number of cases of surgical innovation published in otolaryngic medical journals has fallen drastically since the late 1980s, leading researchers to question the impact of government oversight over surgery, according ...

Recommended for you

What's happening with your donated specimen?

1 hour ago

When donating blood, plasma, human tissue or any other bodily sample for medical research, most people might not think about how it's being used. But if you were told, would you care?

Amgen tops Street 4Q forecasts

20 hours ago

Amgen Inc. cruised to a 27 percent jump in fourth-quarter profit and beat Wall Street expectations, due to higher sales of nearly all its medicines, tight cost controls and a tax benefit.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.