Optimal surface characteristics for instruments for use in laser neurosurgery

K. S. Heiferman*, K. E. Cramer, J. T. Walsh

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


This study was performed to determine whether varying certain characteristics of the surface of an instrument can reduce surgical risks. Flat brain retractors were used to control for variation in the beam striking a curved surface. Identical retractors were prepared with surfaces with various grades of roughness and with different surface materials. Each retractor was tested for absorption and for reflection of energy. The results of this study are most relevant in flat instruments adjacent to sensitive tissues such as flat brain retractors. When a laser beam strikes an instrument which does not touch vulnerable tissues, such as a pituitary rongeur, temperature increases of the instrument become less important. Similarly, when a laser beam which inadvertently strikes a curved instrument, the energy is dissipated. This concept can be utilized in instrument design.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)128-134
Number of pages7
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - Jan 1 1991
EventProceedings of Three-Dimensional Bioimaging Systems and Lasers in the Neurosciences - Los Angeles, CA, USA
Duration: Jan 23 1991Jan 24 1991

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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