A Versatile Low-Temperature Probe for Application to Cryosurgery

  • F. Rothwarf
  • R. A. Cutt
  • R. J. Wolfson
Part of the Advances in Cryogenic Engineering book series (ACRE, volume 10)


Successful application of low-temperature technology to medicine has resulted in the new and expanding field of cryosurgery. The impetus for much of the activity in this field was supplied by Cooper’s use of an insulated, nitrogen-cooled probe to produce carefully controlled brain lesions in patients with Parkinson’s disease [1–4]. Similar cryosurgical devices have since been used in eye surgery to repair retinal detachments, to extract the lens from the eye in cataract cases [5], and to destroy the pituitary gland in cases of advanced breast cancer [6]. The work presented here is part of an interdisciplinary effort using a cryosurgical technique to study the effects of low temperatures on the physiology of the inner ear. The primary aim is to evaluate cryosurgery as a technique for selectively destroying the defective balance mechanism (semicircular canals) associated with Meniere’s disease. Before performing the physiological experiments it was necessary to develop a cryosurgical probe small enough to be applied to the structures of the inner ear.


Semicircular Canal Stainless Steel Tube Heater Power Steel Jacket Silicon Control Rectifier 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1965

Authors and Affiliations

  • F. Rothwarf
    • 1
  • R. A. Cutt
    • 1
  • R. J. Wolfson
    • 1
  1. 1.Philadelphia Presbyterian HospitalPhiladelphiaUSA

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