Experimental Argon Laser Photocoagulation: II. Effects on the Optic Disc

David J. Apple, George J. Wyhinny, Morton F Goldberg, Edward H. Polley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Eight monkeys and five humans were subjected to photocoagulation with single argon laser burns of varying intensity on the optic nerve head. Energies greater than 400 milliwatts, 0.2 second and 100μ spot size consistently caused neural parenchymal damage, even in the absence of heat-generating pigment epithelium. Papillary burns in monkeys and humans created with powers less than 400 mW showed only small, focal submicroscopic areas of degeneration, and were therefore considered relatively safe except for the occasional involvement of critical foveal fibers in which scotomas of disproportionately greater severity than one would expect from the size of the lesion could result. The threshold for toxicity following peripapillary photocoagulation is lower, because the burned pigment epithelium can radiate heat into the adjacent optic nerve fibers. Normal capillaries within the optic nerve were seldom destroyed or occluded, even after high energy densities. In normal vessels, we have found it impossible to create a highly selective lesion without concurrently causing neural damage about the vessel.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)296-304
Number of pages9
JournalArchives of Ophthalmology
Volume94
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1976
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Light Coagulation
Argon
Optic Disk
Optic Nerve
Burns
Haplorhini
Lasers
Epithelium
Hot Temperature
Scotoma
Nerve Fibers

Keywords

  • Argon laser
  • epipapillary photocoagulation
  • neural damage
  • optic nerve head
  • photocoagulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology

Cite this

Experimental Argon Laser Photocoagulation : II. Effects on the Optic Disc. / Apple, David J.; Wyhinny, George J.; Goldberg, Morton F; Polley, Edward H.

In: Archives of Ophthalmology, Vol. 94, No. 2, 1976, p. 296-304.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Apple, David J. ; Wyhinny, George J. ; Goldberg, Morton F ; Polley, Edward H. / Experimental Argon Laser Photocoagulation : II. Effects on the Optic Disc. In: Archives of Ophthalmology. 1976 ; Vol. 94, No. 2. pp. 296-304.
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