Patients—and especially parents of children undergoing surgery—appreciate the endoscope “tremendously,” he said. “They love the fact that they can understand what they’re seeing, as opposed to just trusting the doctor about what they’re seeing. They can actually see it.”
Explore this issue:March 2017
Dr. Hoffer said that mastoidectomy might be needed more often than Dr. Rivas suggested. They can be needed not only for removal of disease, but also for aeration of the cavity for better long-term results.
He also drew attention to potential problems with heat. “If you’re focusing in detail with an endoscope, there is a heat concern,” he said. It hasn’t been shown that hyperthermia causes harm, he said, but it has been shown that hypothermia reduces harm.
Controlling the heat can mean moving the endoscope frequently, adding time to the procedure. “It’s not technology that I avoid,” Dr. Hoffer said. “It’s just that I don’t do it for as many cases.”
Thomas Collins is a freelance medical writer based in Florida.