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Laser Lithotripsy Fragments Salivary Stones In Vitro

Could be used to treat salivary stones in vivo

MONDAY, April 21 (HealthDay News) -- Laser lithotripsy can effectively fragment salivary stones in an in vitro model, suggesting that lasers may be useful for the management of salivary stones in humans, according to research published online April 15 in Lasers in Surgery and Medicine.

Vanessa Siedek, M.D., of Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich, Germany, and colleagues tested the efficacy of two laser systems, the FREDDY laser (λ=532 nm/1,064 nm) and the Ho:YAG laser (λ=2,100 nm), in treating salivary calculi in an in vitro model. Fifteen salivary calculi obtained from patients were treated by the lasers and the fragmentation rate calculated. In addition, human salivary duct mucosa samples were treated and examined histologically in order to determine effects of the lasers on soft tissue.

Treatment with the two laser systems resulted in different patterns of stone fragmentation. The Ho:YAG laser vaporized stones in a milling-like process, while the FREDDY laser cracked the stones into pieces, though fragmentation failed in two cases. Mild soft tissue effects were seen with both lasers.

Both lasers "seem to be effective for at least a partial reduction of size up to a retractable dimension in selected cases. Considering the individual capabilities in stone fragmentation they could be useful in a step among multimodal therapy including endoscopic or surgical removal," conclude the authors.

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