Authors: Thomas Givskov Sørensen, Magnus Balslev Avstorp MD, Ahmad Makki MD and Gete Toft
In this chapter you will learn how to setup the operating microscope, microsurgical instruments, the ergonomics and tremor control in microsurgery.
Setting up the microscope
The operating microscope needs to be adjusted to fit the surgeon prior to the procedure. It is important to optimize working position to reduce strain on the surgeon and enhance working conditions.
The surgeon should be in a comfortable chair, relaxed, with his back straight, feet flat on the ground, and with the microscope in eye level. The operating microscope rests on an arm allowing the height of the microscope above the surgical field to be adjusted and bringing the surgical field into focus. The eyepieces may be adjusted in interpupillary distance, diopter settings and focal length.
Demonstrated on a Zeiss OPMI pico operating microscope
The needle driver is held in the dominant hand and is used for handling the needle while suturing under the microscope. Alternatively, the needle driver can be utilized as forceps for tissue handling or as a probe when in a closed position. The needle driver is spring handled and comes equipped with or without a locking mechanism (Cremaillére).
The adventitia scissors have pointed tips and straight blades. They are used for fine dissection on high magnification, cutting blood vessels and trimming sutures.
The dissecting scissors have blunt tips and curved blades. They are primarily used for microsurgical dissection close to vessels or nerves. Due to the blunt tips, the scissor can be used as a probe while in a closed position. The scissors are spring handled, and therefore open automatically, as tension is released.
Jewelers forceps – straight and angled
The microsurgical forceps or ”jewelers forceps” serves multiple purposes. In general, the tip can be either straight or angled. They are held in the non-dominant hand of the surgeon and are used to present the tissue, create traction, and support the tissue while suturing. They can be used for handling the suture while knot tying, and the angled forceps may even be used as a needle driver for small needles (sizes smaller than 9/0). Two pairs of forceps may be utilized for gentle dissection of connective tissue.
The vessel dilator is used to passively stretch the vessel wall to increase the caliber and minimize the risk of vasospasm. The tip is slim, exactly parallel, polished, and rounded allowing the vessel wall to be stretched with minimal damage.
Acland vessel clamp
The vessel clamps are used to arrest blood flow in arteries or veins while transferring the flap and performing the anastomoses. The clamps have flat surfaces and comes in different sizes for optimal closing force and minimal trauma to vessel walls. The clamps can be singles, doubles parallelly mounted on a slider, or with a built-in frame for suture holding.
Clamp applicator forceps
The clamp applicator forceps are made specifically for the safe application of the Acland vessel clamp. The tips of the forceps are designed to fit the posterior edges of the clamp.
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