Operating room lamps: types of light

Operating room or surgical lamps are a special type of lamps that illuminate the surgical area for optimal viewing of small, low-contrast objects at varying depths in incisions and body cavities. Its main objective is to be able to provide optimal visualization during a surgical procedure.

What are the basic aspects for lighting an operating room?

  • The light of the lamps must be white since in the operating room the doctor needs to be able to observe the color of any organ or tissue since this is an indicator of the state and health of the patient.
  • The more electric current, the more intense the light.
  • The luminaires must be easily manipulated.
  • Do not generate infrared (IR) or ultraviolet (UV) radiation as it can cause damage or injury to body tissue that is exposed during the surgical operation.
  • Easy accessibility and maintenance.
  • Offer an intense light directed but that avoids the minimum visual fatigue and does not cause eye fatigue to the doctors and assistants.
  • A light that does not create shadows and is focused on the surgical intervention area.

Types of operating room lamps

Halogen lamps: They are made of halogen gas and quartz glass. They are incandescent and offer a very intense and bright white light. For years, they were the best operating room lighting on the market. It is the closest thing to the traditional incandescent lamp that used to be used in the domestic environment. Among the advantages, it stands out that the greater the electric current, the greater the illumination and, therefore, a sharper image for the vision of the operating table where the surgeon and the entire medical team work. Another point in favor of this lighting is that it reduces energy consumption. Regarding the inconveniences, they raise the temperature in the area where they are used and they can also suffer inopportune blackouts, which represents a risk for patients and an inconvenience for surgeons who can get hot, sweat or, worse, lose, although be for a short time, the lighting of the area.

LED lamps: They offer an intense white light without shadows, thus offering optimal lighting in the operating room for the work carried out by surgeons and their assistants. Its operation revolves around the diode, which distributes the flow of electric current in a single direction, so that electricity is used much more efficiently and very little of it is needed to achieve powerful lighting in the operating room. Like halogen lamps, the light is more intense with more electrical current. However, they do not heat up and they do not generate as much heat. Another virtue of this type of surgical lamps is that they can be touched by hand without the risk of burns. All these advantages offered by LED lamps for operating rooms facilitate safety and comfort within the operating room. They have a much longer shelf life.

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