June 2015
Volume 56, Issue 7
ARVO Annual Meeting Abstract  |   June 2015
Ophthalmic Plasma Probe - A New Instrument for Delivery of Non-thermal Plasma to the Ocular Surface and Sub-surface
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • David S Pao
    Wills Eye Hospital, Levittown, PA
  • Gregory Fridman
    Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA
  • Kristina Pao
    Wills Eye Hospital, Levittown, PA
  • Footnotes
    Commercial Relationships David Pao, None; Gregory Fridman, None; Kristina Pao, None
  • Footnotes
    Support None
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science June 2015, Vol.56, 373. doi:
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      David S Pao, Gregory Fridman, Kristina Pao; Ophthalmic Plasma Probe - A New Instrument for Delivery of Non-thermal Plasma to the Ocular Surface and Sub-surface. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2015;56(7 ):373.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Purpose: To utilize non-thermal plasma to the ocular surface for prophylaxis against infection at a safe energy range for normal ocular tissue safety. To explore the energy range for treatment of surface and sub-surface pathological tissue with minimal damage to surrounding tissue. To accomplish these goals, a new probe was designed and this instrument is submitted for presentation.

Methods: Plasma produces reactive oxygen species (ROS), predominately nitrogen and oxygen species in air. These have antibacterial properties and may penetrate tissue surface with tissue damage when energy is above a certain threshold.<br /> To test the antibacterial property, live New Zealand white rabbit corneas were innoculated with Staphylococcus aureus. Half were treated with plasma and all cornea swab specimens were plated on blood agar.<br /> To test tissue damage, live rabbit and porcine eyes were treated with plasma energy beyond the range of antibacterial effects to produce visible damage and gradually the energy was reduced. Histological sections for light microscopy were obtained to view any damage.

Results: Comparing bacterial colony counts of blood agar plates, there was marked reduction from innoculated specimen swabs of plasma treated corneas.<br /> Histological examination of eye tissue showed no light microscopy damage at energies used as bactericidal. Increasing above this energy produced clinical and histological damage.<br /> From these trials it was established that the probe will be the dielectric barrier discharge (DBD) design type.

Conclusions: Non-thermal plasma has been shown to achieve blood coagulation, wound sterilization, and treatment of some diseases both in vitro and animal models. Plasma medicine is a new field with many applications in ophthalmology due to its unique specialty. Ophthalmology can be a prime contributor.<br /> Antibacterial surface treatment may consist of a plasma probe over the cataract wound and/or intravitreal injection site for surface wound sterilization, reducing the incidence of endophthalmitis.<br /> Surface and intraocular tumors may be susceptible to plasma treatment, as the tissues penetrated are relatively thin.<br /> This new probe will provide the instrument to conduct these intial studies, particularly in microscopic surgery. The potential for "plasma ophthalmology" is vast and it has just begun.


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