Ultrasonic energy devices for surgery were developed in the early 1990s and are now available for both open and endoscopic surgical procedures. The operating principles of the ultrasonic energy devices for surgery are mainly related to the high-frequency vibration of the dissector’s blade: once in contact with the tissue, it causes tissue dissection by cavitation and haemostasis by denaturation of protein. If compared with conventional techniques (e.g. suture ligation, vascular clips application, and electrocautery), this technology aims to offer benefits in terms of surgical time reduction, reduction of risk of local tissue heat injury and reduction of smoke (known for limiting the visibility during endoscopic procedures).
Ultrasonic energy devices for surgery are the technology assessed within this rapid HTA report. The rationale is represented by the significant volume of such devices purchased by the Italian hospitals. Providing guidance on the evidence-based use of this technology may contribute to improve the allocation of public funds.