Monopolar laparoscopic instruments have an inherent problem with their design; they are prone to insulation failure and capacitive coupling, causing patient burns. These stray energy burns occur in the surgeon’s blind spot. As a result, they typically go undiagnosed and further manifest into severe complications. Stray energy burns led to more than 62,000 patient complications and 4,000 preventable patient deaths over a 10 year period in the USA alone.*
In response to this inherent problem in non-AEM instruments, other medical device manufacturers have made attempts to reduce the risk of stray energy burns from monopolar energy. The intent of these technologies, to reduce preventable patient burns, is an excellent goal. Unfortunately all of these other technologies fall short and only minimally reduce the risk to the patient. Only Encision’s AEM® technology eliminates stray energy burns from monopolar electrosurgical energy in laparoscopy, we guarantee it!
Comparison of Laparoscopic Patient Safety Devices
Other electrosurgical energy forms have gained popularity in recent years. In specific instances these are a great alternative to monopolar energy. However, these technologies have limited application and significantly higher cost of instrumentation. Encision’s AEM monopolar instruments offer a safe, effective, economical solution.
What is Capacitive Coupling?
Capacitive coupling occurs when electrosurgical energy is transferred to the patient without direct contact with the active wire. The fundamental design of all laparoscopic instruments creates a large capacitor, which induces electrical current into the patient without ever contacting the patient’s body. The instrument’s insulation is intact and yet the patient is still burned due to the coupled energy. All monopolar instruments have dangerous levels of capacitive coupling.
What is Insulation Failure?
Insulation failure occurs when there is a hole in the insulation on the shaft of an instrument. This hole allows the full power of the electrosurgical generator to burn the patient in an unintended area.
Insulation failure is extremely common. 1 in 5 reusable instruments has a full thickness insulation failure. 1 in 33 disposable instruments has a failure right out of the package. 57% of insulation failures are not visible to the naked eye.*