Photographic studies of laser-induced bubble formation in absorbing liquids and on submerged targets: implications for drug delivery with microsecond laser pulses
Pulsed laser ablation of blood clots in a fluid-filled blood vessel is accompanied by an explosive evaporation process. The resulting vapor bubble rapidly expands and collapses to disrupt the thrombus (blood clot). The hydrodynamic pressures following the bubble expansion and collapse can also be used as a driving force to deliver clot-dissolving agents into thrombus for enhancement of laser thrombolysis. Thus, the laser-induced bubble formation plays an important role in the thrombus removal process. We investigate the effects of boundary configurations and materials on bubble formation with time-resolved flash photography and high- speed photography. Potential applications in drug delivery using microsecond laser pulses are then discussed.