The PEAK PlasmaBlade is a new electrosurgical device that uses pulsed radiofrequency to generate a plasma-mediated discharge along the exposed rim of an insulated blade, creating an effective cutting edge while the blade stays near body temperature.
Full-thickness incisions were made on the dorsums of pigs with the PlasmaBlade, a conventional electrosurgical device, and a scalpel, and blood loss was quantified. Wounds were harvested at designated time points, tested for wound tensile strength, and examined histologically for scar formation and tissue damage.
Bleeding was reduced significantly (59 percent) in PlasmaBlade incisions compared with scalpel incisions, and acute thermal damage from the PlasmaBlade (66 ± 5 μm) was significantly less than both cut and coagulation mode electrosurgical incisions (456 ± 35 μm and 615 ± 22 μm, respectively). Histologic scoring for injury and wound strength was equivalent between the PlasmaBlade and scalpel incisions. By 6 weeks, the healed PlasmaBlade and scalpel incisions were approximately three times stronger, and scar cosmetic appearance was significantly better compared with electrosurgical incisions.
The PlasmaBlade is a promising new surgical instrument that provides atraumatic, scalpel-like cutting precision and electrosurgical-like hemostasis, resulting in minimal bleeding, tissue injury, and scar formation.