WIT Press

Applications Of Shock Wave Research To Medicine


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K. Takayama & K. Ohtani


Applications of shock wave research conducted in Tohoku University are briefly described. Its is emphasized that underwater shock wave research and its connection to bubble dynamics are one of the most important physical backgrounds to interpret tissue damages occurring during shock wave therapy. In addiction to ESWL, revascularization of cerebral thrombosis by using a laser induced liquid jet and its application to the water jet dissection method are presented. Lastly the development of a laser ablation induced drug delivery system is briefly described. In these applications implicitly and explicitly shock waves and their interaction with the bubble always play an important role. Keywords: shock wave therapy, water jet, gene delivery. 1 Introduction In the Shock Wave Research Center of the Institute of Fluid Science, Tohoku University, the first underwater shock wave research was performed in 1975 in conjunction with bubble dynamic studies. Based on these results, in 1982 we initiated a collaboration with the School of Medicine, Tohoku University for exploring extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy (ESWL), which is a noninvasive disintegration of kidney stones by means of underwater focusing onto kidney stones from outside a human body (Kuwahara and Takayama [12]). A prototype ESWL device was constructed in 1983 and eventually approved in 1987 for clinical therapy by the Ministry of Health in Japan. The existing device developed at the Dornier Systems employed electrical discharges for shock generation (Chaussey et al [2]), however, in our device shock waves were generated by exploding silver azide pellets. It was probably one of the most unique uses of primary explosive for peaceful purpose (Glass [3]). Despite its


shock wave therapy, water jet, gene delivery.