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May 1996

The Stability of Perfluoro-N-Octane During Vitreoretinal Procedures

Author Affiliations

From the Moorfields Eye Hospital, London, England (Drs Bourke and Cooling); Royal Brisbane (Australia) Hospital (Dr Bourke); Fluorosystems Ltd, Bristol, England (Dr Simpson); and Department of Ophthalmology, Cornell University Medical College, New York, NY (Dr Sparrow). Dr Simpson is a director of Fluorosystems Ltd. The other authors do not have a proprietary interest in perfluoro-N-octane.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1996;114(5):537-544. doi:10.1001/archopht.1996.01100130529005

Objectives:  To examine the propensity for intraoperative procedures, such as endolaser, to generate polar impurities in perfluorocarbon liquids, either by degradation of the compound or by dissolution of materials contacting the liquid, given the value of these liquids as adjuncts to vitreoretinal procedures and the importance of using pure and inert liquid.

Methods:  Perfluoro-N-octane liquid recovered from patients after vitreoretinal procedures was analyzed by gas chromatography, nuclear magnetic resonance, ultraviolet spectroscopy, and a cell proliferation assay. Similar analyses were performed on pure and impure perfluoro-N-octane exposed in vitro to superclinical energy levels of argon and YAG laser, endodiathermy, and endoillumination.

Results:  No change in chemical structure and only minor (parts per million) increases in dissolved contaminants were observed. The perfluoro-N-octane liquid retained its inertness as indicated by the inability of fibroblasts to attach and proliferate on its surface.

Conclusion:  The structure and biologic inactivity of perfluoro-N-octane are unaffected by vitreoretinal surgical manipulations.