Peak's Plasmablade is Sci-Fi-like Surgical Tool of the Future

Cutting open a person for surgery using a plain old scalpel seems pretty barbarian compared to this new cutting tool from Peak. Instead of a sharp metal edge, or even an electrosurgical cutter, the Plasmablade uses pulses of plasma generated around its tip to locally cut and cauterize flesh such as skin, fat and muscle. It has the advantages of not damaging nearby tissue since its generated heat remains short term and local, and there's less... uh... smoke to worry about than with electrosurgical tools. If you can stomach the idea, there's a pretty graphic demo video of the blade in action. Just don't be eating while you watch.

The FDA's just okayed it for marketing in the US, so it may be coming to an OR near you soon. [Peak Surgical via Medgadget]