Like many ENTs, John Milligan, M.D. was trained in cold steel tonsillectomy and went on to use other techniques over the years in an effort to minimize pain and speed recovery for his patients. Dr. Milligan tried MiFusion ENTceps™ in 2012 and was pleased to see that the device's Thermal Fusion technology reduced healing time - down to an average of five to seven days compared with 10 to 14 days with electrocautery and seven to 10 days with controlled ablation. The anesthesiologists and nurses who care for Dr. Milligan's patients have noticed the difference as well and are now referring patients to Dr. Milligan for Thermal Fusion tonsillectomies versus conventional techniques.

John Milligan, M.D. of Arizona Otolaryngology Consultants has been caring for patients in the greater Phoenix metropolitan area for nearly 30 years. During that time, he’s tried various technologies and techniques to reduce post-operative pain in tonsillectomy patients, from electrocautery to Coblation®.

“In healthcare, there are those who won’t try something new until it is long proven and then there are others who will venture out and try something new if it’s safe and makes sense for his/her patients - I’m more of the latter,” said Dr. Milligan. “For years I’ve been aggressively trying to minimize pain levels in tonsillectomies and certainly had some success in reducing recovery times. But I’m always on the lookout for something better.”

Speedier Recoveries with Less Pain
In 2012 Dr. Milligan tried MiFusion ENTceps, which employs Thermal Fusion Technology (also known as Tissue Welding). Unlike conventional devices that use monopolar, bipolar or ultrasonic energy as modes of operation, MiFusion ENTceps uses only direct heat and pressure to quickly and delicately seal and divide soft tissue, minimizing collateral tissue damage.

“With ENTceps, I had to change my technique because the device divides the tissue rather than pushing and dissecting it, but I was comfortable using it by the second tonsillectomy case,” said Dr. Milligan. “It’s easy to learn and my efficiency has increased with the number of cases that I’ve performed.”

Dr. Milligan initially performed five tonsillectomy cases with MiFusion ENTceps to determine if the device made a difference in the recovery of his patients. He notes that all five did extremely well so he extended his trial of the technology to an additional 25 patients, who also experienced positive results. Based on the outcomes of these initial cases, Dr. Milligan has continued to use MiFusion ENTceps in his practice and the results have been the same.

“I think the key to ENTceps is the lower heat transmission to the adjacent tissue beyond what is being cut surgically,” said Dr. Milligan. “When the adjacent heat transfer is minimized, there is less thermal damage and, as a result, less pain for the patients.”

At the time of this profile (February 2013), Dr. Milligan has been using MiFusion ENTceps for seven months and has seen a significant difference in patient pain levels and recovery times compared with tonsillectomies performed with electrocautery and Coblation. He notes that the average recovery time from a Thermal Fusion tonsillectomy is five to seven days, compared with seven to 10 days with Coblation and 10 to 14 days with electrocautery.

“Many people are better within four to five days with ENTceps and some have virtually no recovery time at all,” said Dr. Milligan. “Of course, there are those exceptions but I still believe they’ve done better and healed better than they would have with any other technique.”

The clinicians caring for Dr. Milligan’s patients in the recovery room have also observed a difference in MiFusion ENTceps tonsillectomy patients versus patients who have undergone conventional tonsillectomies.

“I’ve had a surprising number of referrals from nurses and anesthesiologists who have seen the improvement with ENTceps patients following surgery, which is very positive feedback about the device,” said Dr. Milligan.

More and more patients are seeking Thermal Fusion tonsillectomies across the U.S. as they learn about the positive results from MiFusion ENTceps. An adult female patient in the Phoenix area recently sought out Dr. Milligan after hearing about a man in the Los Angeles area who had a very positive outcome following an ENTceps procedure.

“She got my name, had the surgery and did extremely well. She took no narcotics during her recovery, which is virtually unheard of in adult tonsillectomies,” said Dr. Milligan.