Erbium: YAG laser ablation of urethral and ureteral tissues

Nathaniel M. Fried, Gary M. Long

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

6 Scopus citations


Cold knife incision of urological strictures results in a high rate of stricture recurrence. This study compares Ho:YAG and Er:YAG lasers for precise incision of urethral and ureteral tissues. Laser ablation was performed using Ho:YAG (λ=2.1 μm) and Er:YAG (λ=2.94 μm) lasers operating in long-pulse mode (τp = 300 μs). Ho:YAG laser radiation was delivered through low-OH fibers while Er:YAG laser radiation was delivered through germanium oxide or sapphire fibers. Ex vivo canine and porcine tissue samples were placed in saline, and perforation thresholds, ablation rates, and histological thermal damage measurements were recorded. Optical fiber damage thresholds during contact ablation were also studied. The Ho:YAG and Er:YAG lasers perforated thick tissue samples at thresholds of 350 J/cm2 and 65 J/cm2, respectively, with peripheral thermal damage zones measuring 290 ± 30 μm and 30 ± 10 μm, respectively. Germanium oxide fibers were damaged at energies greater than 150 mJ/pulse (80 J/cm2), but no damage to sapphire fibers was observed at energies up to 450 mJ/pulse (350 J/cm2). The Er:YAG laser efficiently ablates urethral and ureteral tissues while reducing peripheral thermal damage by an order of magnitude over the Ho:YAG laser. In vivo animal studies for Er:YAG laser incision of strictures are planned with comparison to cold knife incision.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
EditorsW.T.W. Riese, K.E. Bartels, L.S. Bass, K.W. Gregory
Number of pages6
StatePublished - 2002
EventLasers in Surgery: Advanced Characterization, Therapeutics, and Systems XII - San Jose, CA, United States
Duration: Jan 19 2002Jan 22 2002


OtherLasers in Surgery: Advanced Characterization, Therapeutics, and Systems XII
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Jose, CA


  • Erbium
  • Germanium oxide
  • Holmium
  • Laser ablation
  • Optical fibers
  • Sapphire
  • Strictures

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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