Wavelength dependence of pulsed laser ablation of calcified tissue.
Pulsed laser ablation of calcified biological tissue was studied at several wavelengths in the near-ultraviolet, visible, near- and mid-infrared regions of the spectrum. The primary tissue model was bovine shank bone, while human arterial calcified plaque and normal human artery wall were also studied at selected wavelengths for comparison. Laser irradiances were on the order of MW/mm2, fluences ranged up to 1000 mJ/mm2, and repetition rates varied between 0.3-10 Hz. Spot sizes on the tissue surface ranged from 150 to 850 microns. Laser craters made with wavelengths between lambda = 295 nm and lambda = 375 nm and in the lambda = 3 microns region exhibited the highest quality ablation with clean, sharp cuts following closely the spatial contour of the incident beam. Craters drilled with visible wavelengths between lambda = 450 nm and lambda = 590 nm were generally larger than the incident laser beam spot, irregular in shape and often surrounded by large flakes of tissue debris. Ablation fluence thresholds increased with wavelength through the visible wavelengths and into the mid-infrared, but dropped to their lowest values near lambda = 3 microns. Fluence thresholds obtained with the tissue under a 1 mm depth of saline were approximately twice air thresholds. Ablation yields also varied with wavelength, probably due to increased scattering in the visible region, and were the same under saline as in air.
Izatt, JA; Albagli, D; Britton, M; Jubas, JM; Itzkan, I; Feld, MS
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