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Study Finds Starion Instruments' Tissue Welding Technology Reduces Pain and Bleeding in Tonsillectomy Patients

Wednesday, November 7, 2007 General News J E 4
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SUNNYVALE, Calif., Nov. 6 Starion Instruments, a leadingsurgical device company, today announced that a study published in the Annalsof Otology, Rhinology & Laryngology found that the use of Starion'sproprietary Tissue Welding Technology in total tonsillectomy patients resultedin significantly less intraoperative blood loss and lower pain scores comparedwith cold dissection tonsillectomy.

The study, Thermal Welding Versus Cold Dissection Tonsillectomy: AProspective, Randomized, Single-Blind Study in Adult Patients, was led byPelagia Stavroulaki, MD, PhD, Department of Otorhinolaryngology, GeneralHospital, Volos, Greece. Stavroulaki and her team compared the rates ofpost-operative morbidity in adults undergoing thermal (tissue) weldingtonsillectomy versus cold dissection tonsillectomy. While tonsillectomies areone of the most common surgical procedures, morbidity, mainly hemorrhage andpostoperative pain, remains high in the adult population.

The researchers randomized 32 adults with recurrent tonsillitis who werescheduled for elective tonsillectomy to the tissue welding technique or thecold dissection technique, with 16 patients in each group. They estimatedintraoperative blood loss by measuring the amount in the suction bottle and byweighing the cotton pledgets before and after the procedures. The patientswere discharged the day after surgery with an acetaminophen prescription forpain control and a chart to record the following factors on a daily basis for10 days following surgery: intensity of post-operative pain, total analgesicrequirements, last day of taking analgesics, and any other adverse events.

Stavroulaki and her team found that the rate of intraoperative blood losswas significantly lower in the tissue welding group (p < .0001), withessentially no intraoperative bleeding observed. In addition, patients in thetissue welding group showed a general trend toward lower pain scores, with thedifference being statistically significant from the first to the fourthpost-operative days (p < .05). Tissue welding demonstrated the greatestimprovement in pain over cold dissection on the first post-operative day; adifference of 2.3 points on a 10-point scale.

Stavroulaki and her team also noted that Starion's tissue welding forcepsare easy to handle without the need for special training. Since they aredisposable, the forceps eliminate the risk of transmitting variantCreutzfeld-Jakob disease, which may exist with reusable instruments.

According to the researchers, tissue welding tonsillectomy "is a newinnovation that appears to provide a valuable addition to our surgicalarmamentarium for reducing the postoperative morbidity that is usuallyexperienced after total tonsillectomy." Furthermore, the results "provideevidence that patients treated with the tissue welding tonsillectomy mayexperience improved quality of recovery." Moving forward, they willinvestigate postoperative morbidity after tissue welding tonsillectomy inpediatric patients.

About Starion Instruments

Starion Instruments designs, manufactures and sells surgical instrumentsthat simultaneously seal and divide tissue during surgery, employing aproprietary tissue welding technology, which requires no electricity orultrasonic energy across tissue. Starion products are in use worldwide in avariety of cardiac, gynecology, general surgery, otolaryngology and urologyprocedures. For more information, visit the company's website athttp://www.starioninstruments.com.

SOURCE Starion Instruments
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