Specialty Fibers for Medical Laser Systems

Application in the Medical Laser System Industry

In modern medicine, minimally invasive surgeries are increasingly important. The main reason is the shorter recovery time for patients compared to standard procedures. In addition, smaller wounds mean a lower risk of complications.

Many surgical systems rely on specialty optical fibers. Due to the unique properties of fused silica, laser light can be efficiently transported into the body. In addition, optical fibers provide the flexibility to reach areas of the human body that are otherwise difficult to access.

Lithotripsy of Gall, Kidney or Bladder Stones

Gallstones are hardened deposits of digestive fluid that can form in a gallbladder. If they block the bile duct, immediate treatment is required. IR laser treatment to break gallstones into smaller fragments is state of the art. Thanks to our products with high numerical aperture, our customers benefit from solutions for the removal of gallstones or kidney stones even in very narrow passages of the kidney or gallbladder. With our preforms with low OH content, we enable fibers with excellent laser transmission in the infrared range. In addition to HoYAG lasers, Tm fiber lasers are also used for these applications. We offer high-precision tubes for the production of Tm laser fibers.

Illustration of gallstones being removed

Vein Disease

Pressure on leg vessels by dysfunctional venous valves causes deformation and enlarged volume. Less painful and surgical methods with shorter recovery time use lasers. The tip of a fiber catheter is formed to create a radial emission. The vein wall absorbs the laser light, collapses and the body resorbes residual material. Heraeus Conamic offers low OH preforms with highest transmission in the IR range.

Illustration of vein disease treatment using fibers

Arterial Blockage Removal

Circulatory disorders in blood vessels can lead to life-threatening conditions such as heart attacks or strokes. Laser catheters are used in minimally invasive operations to remove such blockages. The laser catheters transmit laser pulses via an optical fiber to the site of the blockage in the affected blood vessels in order to remove the deposits. Short-wave UV laser light is an established technology for such operations. Due to the short wavelength, the risk of damage to the arterial wall is significantly lower as the laser light does not penetrate deep into the vessel wall. To meet the requirements of these applications, Heraeus Conamic offers customized materials with a high OH content for the best performance in the UV range.

Illustration of blockage in the heart's arteries being removed

Enlarged Prostate Disease

Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia is a painful disease. Long recovery times and bleeding are side effects of classic treatments. Modern ambulatory laser surgery with short recovery time is an alternative. A 532 nm laser evaporates the pathological tissue causing coagulation simultaneously to stop the bleeding. Heraeus Conamic offers high performing materials suitable for the visible transmission range.

Illustration of a probe measuring for enlarged prostate disease

Imaging and Endoscopy

Minimally invasive surgeries can prevent arterial clogging which leads to serious diseases. In preparation of these surgeries it is important to understand the local morphology. A new technique is intravascular optical coherence tomography (OCT). A 1300 nm laser illuminates the blood vessel through an optical fiber and the backscattered signal is analyzed. Heraeus Conamic manufactures preforms with geometries designed for applications like OCT in all possible wavelength ranges.

Illustration of an endoscope inside the heart

IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) Treatment

Pulsed flash lamps excite not only solid-state lasers, but also non-laser devices such as intense pulsed light (IPL) lamps that are mainly used in medical or cosmetic treatments. A special doping of the quartz glass (UV block quartz glass) prevents skin damaging UV components from reaching the patient. At the same time, the glass must be able to withstand high power of the pulsed light over a long service lifetime. For this reason, the combination of doped synthetic quartz crystals that are milled into grains and then fused using the Heraeus Conamic flame fusion process is best in class.

Illustration of an IPL device for hair removal using pulsed light

Tattoo Removal

Nowadays it is very common to get tattoos. As a result, the demand for plastic surgery treatments to remove tattoos has increased in recent years. Laser irradiation in the visible light spectrum can be used to remove tattoos without leaving scars. This is achieved by using lasers with specific wavelengths that are matched to the color pigment. To meet these requirements, Heraeus Conamic offers preforms for optical fibers with a wide transmission range.

Illustration of a tattoo being removed by a laser device

Specialty fiber preforms tailored to your specific application

The interaction between material (e.g. tissue) and light depends on the wavelength and intensity of the light. For example, green laser light at 532 nm is widely used for treatments such as the removal of enlarged prostate tissue because the green laser light vaporizes the diseased tissue. At the same time, it interacts with red blood cells and causes coagulation, which stops the tissue from bleeding.

Each medical application requires special light sources and transmission properties of the optical fibers used. We will be happy to help you find the best material for your application.


  • Brochure: Specialty Fiber Preforms for Medical Applications

  • Data Sheet: Specialty Fiber Preforms