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EXPEDITED PUBLICATION, ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2021  |  Volume : 69  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 734-738

Propensity of aerosol and droplet creation during oculoplastic procedures: A risk assessment with high-speed imaging amidst COVID-19 pandemic


1 Orbit and Oculoplasty Services, Narayana Nethralaya, Bangalore, India
2 Department of Mechanical Engineering, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India
3 Cataract Services, Narayana Nethralaya, Bangalore, India
4 Cornea and Refractive Surgery Services, Narayana Nethralaya, Bangalore, India
5 Imaging, Biomechanics and Mathematical Modelling Solutions lab, Narayana Nethralaya Foundation, Bangalore, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Roshmi Gupta
Ophthalmic Plastics, Orbital Disease and Ocular Oncology Service, Narayana Nethralaya, 121/C Chord Road, Rajajinagar 1st R Block, Bengaluru - 560 010, Karnataka
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/ijo.IJO_2859_20

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Purpose: The study uses principles of liquid and gas mechanics to verify and quantify the generation of aerosols in oculoplastic procedures, namely surgery using a scalpel, electrosurgical device, and a mechanized drill. Methods: Surgical techniques were performed ex vivo using the electrosurgical device, scalpel, and mechanized drill on the muscle and bone of commercially available chicken. The liquid and gas dynamics were observed using a high-speed high-resolution Photron SA5 camera (0.125 to 8 ms temporal resolution, 0.016 to 0.054 mm/pixel spatial resolution) and stroboscopic lighting (Veritas 120 E LED Constellation). The analysis was performed using in-house algorithms and ImageJ software. Results: The use of a mechanized drill at 35000 rpm and a 3 mm fluted burr generated aerosol with particle size 50 to 550 microns with a spread of 1.8 m radius. Surgical smoke was generated by an electrosurgical device in both cutting and coagulation modes. Dispersion of the smoke could be controlled significantly by the use of suction, mean smoke spread ratio being 0.065 without suction and 0.002 with use of suction within 2 cm. Conclusion: The quantification of the aerosol generation will help surgeons take practical decisions in their surgical techniques in the pandemic era.


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