COBLATION Technology

COBLATION technology is a chemical process that dissolves tissue intraoperatively using glow discharge plasma. COBLATION technology is used in a COBLATION tonsillectomy to dissolve the tonsils. Compared to other techniques such as electrocautery, COBLATION technology uses lower heat that reduces pain after surgery 1-9.

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The two primary approaches to tonsillectomy are total tonsillectomy, where the entirety of the tonsil tissue and the capsule are removed, and intracapsular tonsillectomy, where the tonsil tissue is removed, but the tonsil capsule is left in place. Both techniques can be preformed using COBLATION technology, with a range of wands designed for both tonsil and adenoid procedures, featuring integrated saline delivery and suction, and malleable shafts.

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Post-operative outcomes

COBLATION plasma technology has clinically proven outcomes for tonsillectomy, with both total and intracapsular approaches1. By operating at lower temperatures than other techniques such as monopolar electrocautery, COBLATION tonsillectomies result in less pain, less post tonsillectomy hemorrhage, and less readmission*1-3, 5.

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No matter how statistically safe a procedure has proven to be, every surgery has risks. Post Tonsillectomy Hemorrhage (PTH) is a potentially serious complication that has been reported in literature for both adult and pediatric patients. It is reported to occur following use of COBLATION devices as well as following the use of other surgical devices and methods. Before making any surgical decision, you should speak with your doctor about any potential risks.

*Compared to monopolar electrocautery; p<0.001

COBLATION wands are contraindicated for use in patients with cardiac pacemakers or other electronic device implants.

1. Magdy EA, Elwany S, El-Daly AS, Abdel-Hadi M, Morshedy MA. Coblation tonsillectomy: a prospective, double-blind, randomised, clinical and histopathological comparison with dissection–ligation, monopolar electrocautery and laser tonsillectomies. J Laryngol Otol. 2008;122(3):282 – 290.
2. Smith+Nephew 2010. PROCISE LW & MLW, Thermal Measurement and Comparison to CO2 and KTP Laser Systems. Internal Report. P/N 86257 Rev. A.
3. Smith+Nephew 2010. PROcise XP Comparative Thermal Measurement Bench-Top Study. Internal Report. P/N 60736-01 Rev. A.
4. Roje Z, Racic G, Dogas Z, Pisac VP, Timms MS. Postoperative Morbidity and Histopathologic Characteristics of Tonsillar Tissue Following Coblation Tonsillectomy in Children: A Prospective Randomized Single-Blind Study. Coll Antropol. 2009;33(1):293 – 298.
5. Smith+Nephew 2017. Coblation Dissection Versus Monopolar Dissection – A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Internal Report. P/N 91999.
6. Temple RH, Timms MS. Paediatric coblation tonsillectomy. Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol. 2001;61(3):195 – 198.
7. Ahmad MU, Wardak AN, Hampton T, Siddiqui MRS, Street I. Coblation versus cold dissection in paediatric tonsillectomy: a systematic review and meta-analysis. J Laryngol Otol. 2020;134(3):197 – 204.
8. Omrani M, Barati B, Omidifar N, Okhovvat AR, Hashemi SAG. Coblation versus traditional tonsillectomy: A double blind randomized controlled trial. J Res Med Sci. 2012;17(1):45 – 50.
9. Harley et al. “Coblation vs Monopolar Dissection – A systematic review and meta-analysis”, submitted for publication 7/17/17, internal P/N 91999

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