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Ohm Society
Cauterization Print E-mail

Dr. Kennedy Historically, cauterization was used to stop heavy bleeding during amputations and otehr surgeries. A piece of metal was heated over a fire and applied to the wound. This caused tissues and blood to coagulate thus controlling the bleeding - at the cost of extensive tissue damage. Later, special medical instruments called cauters were used to cauterize arteries. These were first described by Abu al-Qasim al-Zahrawi (aka Abulcasis) an Andalusian-Arab Spanish Moorish physician and surgeon. He is considered the father of modern surgery, and as Islam's greatest medieval surgeon, whose influence in both Islamic and European surgical circles was profound. He also introduced the technique of ligature (tying off) of the arteries as an alternative to cauterization, which was later improved and used more effectively by Ambroise Paré.

Electrocauterization (aka electric surgery or electrosurgery) is the destruction of tissue with electricity and is widely used in modern surgery. The procedure is frequently used to stop bleeding of small vessels (larger vessels are ligated) or for cutting through soft tissue. The Electrosurgical Generator (ESG) (commonly referred to as an electrosurgical unit, ESU, or simply as a generator) powers an electrosurgical system with electricity at an appropriate voltage, frequency and waveform for cutting or for coagulation.

The information in this article is not meant to be medical advice.�Treatment for a medical condition should come at the recommendation of your personal physician.

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