Laser application in neurosurgery
BACKGROUND: Technological innovations based on light amplification created by stimulated emission of radiation (LASER) have been used extensively in the field of neurosurgery. METHODS: We reviewed the medical literature to identify current laser-based technological applications for surgical, diagnostic, and therapeutic uses in neurosurgery. RESULTS: Surgical applications of laser technology reported in the literature include percutaneous laser ablation of brain tissue, the use of surgical lasers in open and endoscopic cranial surgeries, laser-assisted microanastomosis, and photodynamic therapy for brain tumors. Laser systems are also used for intervertebral disk degeneration treatment, therapeutic applications of laser energy for transcranial laser therapy and nerve regeneration, and novel diagnostic laser-based technologies (e.g., laser scanning endomicroscopy and Raman spectroscopy) that are used for interrogation of pathological tissue. CONCLUSION: Despite controversy over the use of lasers for treatment, the surgical application of lasers for minimally invasive procedures shows promising results and merits further investigation. Laser-based microscopy imaging devices have been developed and miniaturized to be used intraoperatively for rapid pathological diagnosis. The multitude of ways that lasers are used in neurosurgery and in related neuroclinical situations is a testament to the technological advancements and practicality of laser science.
Surgical neurology international
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Belykh, Evgenii; Yagmurlu, Kaan; Martirosyan, Nikolay L.; Lei, Ting; Izadyyazdanabadi, Mohammadhassan; Malik, Kashif M.; Byvaltsev, Vadim A.; Nakaji, Peter; and Preul, Mark C., "Laser application in neurosurgery" (2017). Neurosurgery. 1698.