Optical Fiber Coupling System for Steerable Endoscopic Instruments

Zhu M, Shen Y, Chiluisa AJ, Song J, Fichera L, Liu Y, IEEE Engineering in Medicine And Biology Conference (2021).
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In this paper, we present an optical coupling system that couples light from an Endostat fiber in a commercial laser surgical system into a smaller multimode fiber, in order to enable endoscopic probe steering in a tightly confined space. Unlike the Endostat fibers, which have a minimum bending radius of 12 mm due to the large diameter, our work allows the laser to be delivered by smaller fibers that can be readily bent at a 6-mm bending radius by a distal steerable mechanism. Such a readily achievable sharp bending facilitates the surgical laser to access hard-to-reach anatomies. We experimentally achieved an optical power coupling efficiency of ≈ 50%. Tissue ablation experiments were performed to prove the feasibility and potential of our light coupling system in clinical laser surgeries, as well as other optical fiber-based endoscopic medical devices.