Schlieren imaging: Optical techniques to visualize thermal interactions with biological tissues

Rudolf Verdaasdonk*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademicpeer-review


During surgical procedures, thermal energy is commonly used to create hemostasis by heating the tissue above coagulation temperatures. During the denaturation of proteins and collagen, microvessels shrink and the passage of blood is blocked. The surgeon can resect diseased tissues from the body with minimal loss of blood. Electrosurgery or diathermia is the standard instrument in the operating room (OR) for surgical incisions or resections. Additionally, various instruments are able to heat tissue locally like lasers, RF needles, and ultrasonically vibrating tips. Each instrument has its unique characteristics and optimal settings depending on the application. Either tissue can be evaporated at a small spot without thermal effect in the direct environment or a large volume is coagulated before resection of, for example, a tumor.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook of Physics in Medicine and Biology
PublisherCRC Press/Balkema
ISBN (Electronic)9781420075250
ISBN (Print)9781420075243
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2010
Externally publishedYes


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