Dr. John Craig, of the University of Pennsylvania Department of Otolaryngology, and Dr. Parul Goyal, of Syracuse Otolaryngology, recently conducted a study regarding the safety of nasal endoscopes. The article was published in the medical journal International Forum of Allergy & Rhinology.
A nasal endoscope is a piece of equipment used during nasal and sinus surgery. It allows surgeons to look inside the nose and sinuses during surgery.
Studies performed previously have shown that the endoscopes used during sinus surgery can become very warm during sinus surgery. If care is not taken, the heat can be transmitted to the sinuses. Drs. Craig and Goyal looked to see if irrigation sheaths can help decrease the maximum temperatures of the endoscopes. These sheaths are typically used during surgery to help the surgeon rinse the tip of the endoscope. This can make it easier for the surgeon to see the important structures in the nose.
The study found that sheaths can help insulate the endoscopes against dangerous temperatures. The sheaths led to approximately a 5% decrease in endoscope temperatures. With active irrigation, the temperatures decreased by over 12%.
Dr. Craig and Dr. Goyal concluded that while the sheaths are used to improve visualization, they may also help keep endoscope temperatures at lower levels.