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The risk of an oxygen enriched airway fire during oropharyngeal surgery with a laser is supposedly minimized by the use of a laser-ignition-resistant endotraoheal tube such as those made by Bivona, Mallinckrodt, Baxter Norton, Sheridan, or Xomed; or Merocel, a tube wrap marketed as laser resistant; or 3M copper, 3M aluminum, or Radio Shack sensing metallic tapes which are commonly used to protect standard tubes. We exposed these devices to CO2, Nd:YAG, and KTP laser energy in various oxygen-nitrogen and oxygen-helium atmospheres. Only the Baxter Norton tube and the 3M copper taped tubes did not burn under any test conditions. Other tubes were ignition resistant under some conditions, and the Sheridan and Xomed tubes burned under most test conditions.
laser resistant endotracheal tubes, oxygen mixtures, lasers, airway fires, flammability
de Richemond, AL
senior project engineer, ECRI, PA