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May 1993

An Unexpected Problem With an Inexpensive Air Pump for Vitreous Surgery

Author Affiliations

Izmir, Turkey

Arch Ophthalmol. 1993;111(5):583-584. doi:10.1001/archopht.1993.01090050017011

To the Editor.  —Fluid-air exchange is an important technique in the repair of complicated retinal detachments. Gross and associates1 described a simple, inexpensive, and pressure-regulated air pump for fluid-air exchange during pars plana vitrectomy. Landers and associates2 designed a similar air pump and found it comparable with the Grieshaber Air System (Grieshaber, Langhorn, Pa) in different laboratory and operating room situations. Unfortunately, with a similar air pump we encountered an unexpected problem that should be taken into consideration by vitreous surgeons, especially those in developing countries.We used an inexpensive fish-tank air pump (Has Research Inc, Izmir, Turkey). The air pump consisted of a transformer for alternating current, a metal rod that was connected to a rare earth magnet, and a diaphragm (Fig 1). The rare earth magnet vibrated the metal rod back and forth (approximately 50 times per second) as alternating current changed its direction. Thus, movements