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    Making phaco platform transition increases surgical safety, efficiency

    Cataract surgeon finds advantages with shift to Venturi-based system

     

    Seeing the differences

    The differences are noticeable during both nuclear disassembly and cortical cleanup. Whether he is performing femtosecond laser-assisted or conventional cataract surgery, Dr. Solomon said the Venturi system offers the advantage of being able to have a very rapid rise in vacuum that allows for reduced use of energy.

    “With this system, the vacuum is doing all of the work for removing the nuclear pieces by enhancing the ability to acquire and hold the pieces,” he said. “As a result, fragment removal becomes much more efficient in terms of using less ultrasound energy.”

    Using the silicone irrigation/aspiration sleeve that is available for the Stellaris platform with the Venturi pump also makes complete cortex removal safer and easier. 

    “The combination of a high-vacuum setting with the very small port silicone I/A sleeve advances cortical removal to a new level,” Dr. Solomon said.

    He also finds it advantageous that thanks to the dual-function linear footpedal found on the Stellaris/Stellaris PC, he can easily adjust the level of ultrasound energy as needed for different grade cataracts in addition to having instantaneous control over vacuum.

    User tips

    Because things are happening faster with the Venturi system, surgeons do need to be mindful about the location of their instruments. That said, however, because the Venturi system favors followability, surgeons can keep the phaco tip steady in the middle of the eye.

    “Nuclear material gently gravitates to the tip because of the dynamic rise in vacuum, and so there is very little need for moving the instrument around inside the eye,” Dr. Solomon explained. “Consequently, I can also easily switch between hands for holding the phaco handpiece and I can also use the instrument in my fellow hand to gently encourage fragments toward the phaco tip in a knife and fork-like maneuver that adds to the increased efficiency.”

    The reduced movement inside the eye combined with the incredible anterior chamber stability afforded by the Venturi-based system and reduced ultrasound energy use explain the clear corneas and very quiet appearance of the eyes postoperatively, he noted.

    Nevertheless, Dr. Solomon said it is important to use a dispersive viscoelastic to coat and protect the corneal endothelium.

    The benefits of the Venturi pump system also provide the capacity for dual functionality to perform both cataract and vitreoretinal procedures, he noted.

    Dr. Solomon said that type of versatility was another feature that attracted him to the system.

     

    Jonathan Solomon, MD

    E: [email protected]

    Dr. Solomon is a consultant to Abbott, Alcon Laboratories, and Bausch + Lomb

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