It is a relatively new technology that utilizes direct heat and pressure to fuse and divide soft tissue delicately.
With the advancement in the field of medicine, several new operating procedures have surfaced that not only to make the doctors’ job less complicated but also to make treatments and operations far less painful for the patients as compared to the previous methods that were employed.
One such procedure that has come to light is thermal fusion tonsillectomy.
Tonsillectomy itself is one of the most frequently performed otorhinolaryngologic surgical procedures.
A tonsillectomy can cause pain, bleeding, and dehydration because patients often find it painful to swallow food and liquid.
However, a few doctors found a way around this issue and devised a new form of tonsillectomy that avoids nearly all of these complications.
Even though this new system has numerous advantages over its predecessor, it is still considered quite uncommon. So why is this?
Throughout this article, we will take a brief look at the reasons behind this scenario.
The first significant reason is that no experts teach this method of tonsillectomy at the medical institutes.
The fault gets partly attributed to the company that manufactures the equipment for thermal fusion tonsillectomy.
As one of the devices needed for the procedure, the Thermal Welding System (TWS), it’s not as easy to find as many other instruments and tools for most traditional forms of surgery.
Some can say with a certain degree of certainty that these companies have not been as aggressive in marketing their products and have not approached the medical institutes to have this procedure included in the curriculum.
Tonsillectomy is a reasonably straightforward procedure with few complications. That is why, many a time, the senior students often carry out the demonstrations of the juniors.
It is necessary for the teachers to get on board with the idea so that they can introduce this procedure and its benefits to their students.
Why do doctors change their operating procedures?
When the young doctors step into the real world, there are many instances where they have to override/update the existing information that they attained at their respective institutes.
Two significant reasons can be the cause of this. The first goal is that many times, the young doctors observe the veterans of their fields and see them in action.
They might take inspiration from their operating techniques which might offer secondary complications, less time consuming or more accuracy.
The second reason why surgeons might want to adopt other methods is when a representative from a respective company, visit the doctors and explain the advantages of the new method/technology over the existing one.
In this regard, laser technology has gained much attention because of the reduced risk of complications and degree of pain experienced by the patients.
Thermal Welding System
The TWS is a new surgical device for simultaneous tissue sealing and dividing. It consists of a power supply unit, cautery forceps, and a footswitch.
The heat at the tip of the forceps helps to make precise incisions and later squeeze the tissues between insulated jaws and seal them with little to no problem.
Since the heat focuses on the small area the doctors are treating, the impact on nearby tissues is minimal.
Some doctors resort to this process to treat conditions such as the following:
- Recurrent infections of acute tonsillitis
- Sleep apnea
- Difficulty breathing or swallowing
Research suggests that patients treated with this procedure are less likely to present postoperative pain or bleeding like some other people do as a result of similar treatments.
The Pros and Cons
Like every piece of technology, there are pros and cons entailed. The disadvantages of using thermal fusion tonsillectomy are that the equipment is difficult to install at first. And then there is always the risk of a fire breaking out.
Furthermore, the process was a very long one and required a lot of hard work which often wears out the surgeons.
However, the patient satisfaction seems to have gone up as studies have shown that the number of people complaining of post-operation pains has gone down significantly with the introduction of this procedure.
With the passage of time, other high prestige techniques such as balloon sinuplasty have also surfaced and have done very well.
But still, when it comes to low prestige, low-income procedure, thermal fusion tonsillectomy is the best option for the surgeons out there.