Intact cells on the laser handpiece--a non-contact contamination.
Wolf R, Brenner S, Messer G
Material adhering to the handpiece of the laser instrument was collected and analysed. Examination of semithin sections of the material by light microscopy revealed small clusters of clearly defined whole cells among the abundant debris. Electron microscopy of the cells revealed the presence of cell membranes, cytoplasm and organelles such as mitochondria. This could mean that infected cells or virus particles could adhere to the laser instrument or the hands of the operator as well. The medical implication of this finding requires serious consideration in regard to risks of infection from this procedure, to both patient and clinical personnel.