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22 May 1995 In vivo laser-induced breakdown in the rabbit eye
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Threshold measurements for femtosecond laser pulsewidths have been made for retinal minimum visible lesions (MVLs) in Dutch Belted rabbit and rhesus monkey eyes. Laser-induced breakdown (LIB) thresholds in biological materials including vitreous, normal saline, tap water, and ultrapure water have been measured and reported using an artificial eye. We have recorded on video the first LIB causing bubble formation in any eye in vivo using albino rabbit eyes (New Zealand white) with 120- femtosecond (fs) pulses and pulse energies as low as 5 microjoules ((mu) J). These bubbles were clearly formed anterior to the retina within the vitreous humor and, with 60 (mu) J of energy, they lasted for several seconds before disappearing and leaving no apparent damage to the retina. We believe this to be true LIB because of the lack of pigmentation or melanin granules within the albino rabbit eye (thus no absorptive elements) and because of the extremely high peak powers within the 5-(mu) J, 120-fs laser pulse. These high peak powers produce self-focusing of the pulse within the vitreous. The bubble formation at the breakdown site acts as a limiting mechanism for energy transmission and may explain why high-energy femotsecond pulses at energies up to 100 (mu) J sometimes do not cause severe damage in the pigmented rabbit eye. This fact may also explain why it is so difficult to produce hemorrhagic lesions in either the rabbit or primate eye with 100-fs laser pulses.
© (1995) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Clarence P. Cain, Cheryl Dawn DiCarlo, Paul K. Kennedy, Gary D. Noojin, Rodney E. Amnotte, and William P. Roach "In vivo laser-induced breakdown in the rabbit eye", Proc. SPIE 2391, Laser-Tissue Interaction VI, (22 May 1995);


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