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All Holmium Laser Fibers are the Same, Right? Part 9 August 02 2016


All Holmium Laser Fibers are the Same, Right? Part 8: Moses and the Stones July 12 2016

Losses due to boiling water in surgery can be much larger than most surgeons appreciate and, in some cases these losses approach the total pulse energy, rendering laser surgery ineffective. It is important to know the variables affecting boiling losses and how to negotiate around these losses to optimize efficacy in laser lithotripsy.

All Holmium Laser Fibers are the Same, Right? Part 7: Cladding Modes June 28 2016

All Holmium Laser Fibers are the Same, Right? Part 7: Cladding Modes Ignorance of reality yields solutions that function solely as fantasy. What are ‘Cladding Modes’? ‘Cladding modes’ are almost universally misunderstood as being light rays or modes of propagation that are contained solely within the fiber cladding. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I6yjDPo4AHg Snell’s law precludes the containment described in this video (Figure 1 is adapted from the video), a video that is representative of...

“All Holmium Laser Fibers are the Same, Right?” Part 6: Minding the Gap May 24 2016

  FIGURE 1: Fiber Sleeved with Quartz Ferrule The gap (FIG. 1) between the fiber and the quartz ferrule is a fundamental problem of quartz sleeved fibers because that gap harbors volatile and non-volatile contaminants from production or cleaning. These contaminants are inevitably vaporized and deposit on the blast shield or focusing optic or both. In extreme cases, thermal expansion of materials within the gap can fracture the fiber or...

“All Holmium Laser Fibers are the Same, Right?” Part 5: Beyond Air Well Terminations May 04 2016

FIGURE 1: Trimedyne Holmium Fiber Connector (1991 to Present) Another common termination had its genesis (for holmium laser fibers) at Trimedyne right around 1990 (U. S. Patent No. 5,179,610, Milburn, et al., Figure 1). Trimedyne’s solution is elegant; if a bit over the top for 80W. Knowing that the OmniPulse™ holmium laser presented a laser focal spot that is too large to couple to smaller fibers, and knowing that the...

All Holmium Laser Fibers are the Same, Right? Pt.4 -- Fiber Design Evolution April 20 2016

Part 4: Fiber Design Evolution -- the early days as reflected in today's products First and foremost, for differentiation among holmium laser fibers, is the issue of fiber dimensions. Frankly, I am astonished at the lack of clarity or standardization in identifying fiber sizes within this industry. Almost all “200 micron” fibers are actually much larger than 200 microns; not as egregiously large as described in some of the urological literature, where...

All Holmium Laser Fibers are the Same, Right? Part 3: Pulsar HPC Introduction April 11 2016

Before updating this entry, a reader asked a question about a statement I'd made about the flexibility of the Boston Scientific holmium fibers AccuMax™ and Flexiva™ that I answered in the updated Part 2 entry. I am leaving my answer to that question in this entry, for congruity. Pardon the redundancy. Q: ‘How do you know Boston’s AccuMax™ and Flexiva™ are stiffer than ProFlex 200 if, as you say, you’ve never seen...

All Holmium Laser Fibers are the Same, Right? Part 2: So what happened? April 06 2016

So what happened? At the time IQinc was sold, in 2006, we had been making SureFlex™ for a decade since the original BlackHole™ single use design was released. SureFlex had gone through multiple generations of design improvements as described in four US patents, now owned by Boston Scientific. We'd demonstrated to a Lumenis VP that we could deliver 100W from their VersaPulse laser, through our true 200 micron fiber while in...

All Holmium Laser Fibers are the Same, Right? Part 1: An Introduction April 05 2016

Stephen’s Law of Advancing Technology: Without a leader in innovation, product designs converge. Corollary to Stephen’s Law: Dollar-driven designs approach minimum acceptable performance. A tale of two fibers – it’s not the best quality; it’s not the worst quality (upper left -- connector with huge glue ring, steel tube, glass ferrule and the fiber in the very center; upper right -- close-up of fiber input; lower left -- close-up of...

A Practical Guide to Producing Safe & Efficient Surgical Fiber Working Tips March 31 2016

Tip failure occurs more rapidly where the tip begins with flaws, particularly where the optical output of the fiber is distorted. Most instructions for reproducing fiber tips are crude and non-scientific; “stripping and cleaving” instructions found on the internet, within other fiber manufacturers’ websites and IFUs typically yield highly variable and suboptimum results.   The following guide represents best practices in producing fiber working tips and is based upon the science of Fracture...

InnovaQuartz launches IQ University January 12 2016

We are excited to launch IQ university. We've uploaded some of the things we've worked on over the years -- after cleaning them up, of course. We have a lot more and more ideas, too, but time is a precious commodity so be a bit patient with us and check in periodically or request a topic for doctorsilica to cover: steveg@innovaquartz.com

Who Needs a True 200 μm Core Fiber? December 21 2015

I find myself addressing this question with customers on an almost weekly basis, so I thought I would blog about it since many of you likely have the same questions: Who the heck needs a 200 μm core fiber? And if they’re so great, why don’t other companies make one? OK, I admit it; I added the second half of the question to sing the praises of InnovaQuartz versus the...
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