25-Gauge Instrumentation: Engineering Challenges and Tradeoffs
25-gauge instrumentation has reduced the surgical incision size. This reduction in size has made vitreoretinal procedures not only sutureless but, more importantly, made the procedures less invasive and potentially safer.
The sutureless 25-gauge pars plana vitrectomy reduces the postoperative inflammation at sclerotomy sites, thus reducing patient discomfort after surgery and hastening postoperative recovery.
The majority of experienced vitreoretinal surgeons have now been exposed at some level to 25-gauge instrumentation, and many use it on a routine basis. However, only a few surgeons have experience with the engineering development challenges and tradeoffs associated with small-diameter instrumentation.
This chapter will explore some of the key areas of the design and functioning of small-diameter instruments, so that surgeons may better understand their performance.
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