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Cauterization - Research Paper Example

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[Name of of Lecturer] Cauterization Introduction Cauterization refers to a medical procedure that involves creating burns on body tissues in an attempt to stop bleeding, close wounds or close amputations (Narayan, Hayward, Soballe, Nimbkar, Nielsen, & Drucker 263)…
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Download file to see previous pages Cauterization is effective in stopping bleeding because the heat makes the blood clot thus closing the wound. Cauterization should not be confused with cautery which involves mere branding, a process of creating a mark on a human being as punishment, identification, or decoration (Narayan et al 264). Medical history documents show that cauterization was applied range of medical procedures such as in destruction of tumors, elimination of irritations, and stopping of blood loss. This was long before the development of cauters, which made the process a little bit more efficient. This medical procedure dates as early as the 10th century. One of the earliest physicians recognized to have used this method to stop bleeding is Abu al-Qasim, an Andalusian physician. He developed cauters, special tools used to stop bleeding of arteries. The term cautery refers to a metal device that is heated to a pale red glow and then applied to a wound to produce blisters or stop bleeding of a blood vessel. The practice of cauterization is widespread in treatment of wounds and was exceptionally helpful before the advent of antibiotics (Narayan et al 263). Historically, cauterization was believed to prevent infections but modern research has shown that it actually increases the risk of infection by causing more tissue damage and providing a more conducive environment for the growth of bacteria. Cauterization is frequently used in modern medical practice although the methods have changed. Modern-world cauterization may take one of the following three forms; electrocauterization, chemical cauterization, and use of lasers to cauterize tissues (Narayan et al 263). The next subsection will try to explain these different approaches to cauterization. Electrocauterization, Chemical, and Laser Cauterization In this case, the heat used to burn the tissue is obtained through electrical means. This process is mostly used to destroy tissues and prevent excessive bleeding from small arteries and softer tissues (Narayan et al 263). It is widely employed in surgical procedures like mastectomy. Another area of application for electrocauterization is cardiac ablation to remove damaged tissue from the heart to restore regular heartbeat. Electrocauterization is more efficient than chemical cauterization since in the latter case chemicals can spread into and affect adjacent tissues (Narayan et al 264). However, smoke produced during this procedure may contain toxic substances that may harm tissues of a patient and operating staff. Chemical Cauterization achieves burning of tissues by chemical means. It involves the application of freezing chemicals, acids, and other substances that produce a frost or chemical burn. It is not as clean a process as the usage of electric pulses since there are concerns that the skin absorbs some of the chemicals. Examples of chemicals commonly used in this process include; silver nitrate, trichloroacetic acid, and cantharidin. Chemical cauterization is used to burn off small growths like moles and warts. A weakness of this process is that chemicals may spread into and affect adjacent tissues. On the other hand, laser cauterization is quickly gaining popularity in removal of tissues. It involves the removal of unwanted tissues using laser beams. Some medical practitioners prefer this method to electrocauterization and chemical cauterization for the reason that it enables exceptionally precise and restricted surgery (Narayan et ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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