Conference Paper

Assessment and correction of imaging artifacts in skin imaging using fibre-based optical coherence tomography

Opt.+Biomed. Eng. Lab., Univ. of Western Australia, Crawley, NSW, Australia
Conference: Optical Fibre Technology (ACOFT), 2010 35th Australian Conference on
Source: IEEE Xplore


This study reports two types of imaging artifacts in 3D optical coherence tomography images of human skin - intensity deficits and geometrical distortion, and describes their reduction through the application of refractive index matching media.

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    ABSTRACT: Histology represents the gold standard for morphological investigation of the skin, though biopsy may alter the original morphology, is non-repeatable on the same site and always requires an iatrogenic trauma. In the past decade, advances in optics, fibre as well as laser technology have enabled the development of a novel non-invasive optical biomedical imaging technique, optical coherence tomography (OCT). The latter is based on a classic optical measurement method known as low-coherence interferometry that enables non-invasive, high resolution, two- or three-dimensional, cross-sectional imaging of microstructural morphology in biological tissue in situ. Using conventional OCT with a lateral resolution of 10-15 microm, the stratum corneum of glabrous skin (palmoplantar), the epidermis and the upper dermis can usually be identified, as well as skin appendages and blood vessels. For example, non-invasive monitoring of cutaneous inflammation, hyperkeratotic conditions and photoadaptive processes is possible by means of OCT. Furthermore, the development of high-output broadband light sources, e.g. femtosecond Ti:sapphire laser, might soon enable ultrahigh image resolutions of about 1 microm in order to investigate skin tissue on the cellular level, which could potentially allow the differentiation between benign and malignant tissues. Beyond a high resolution morphology in OCT images, tissue characterization by additional local physical parameters, such as the scattering coefficient and refractive index may be of great value, in particular in cosmetics and the pharmaceutical industry. Functional OCT imaging based on spectroscopy, tissue birefringence, elastography and Doppler flow reveals further information on tissue properties and represents an important progress of OCT technique in the field of dermatology. Therefore, the advanced versions of OCT technique might not only lead to significant new insights in skin physiology and pathology, but also in diagnosis and therapeutic control of cutaneous disorders with respect to non-invasive diagnosis of conditions and monitoring of disease activity in addition to treatment effects over time.
    Journal of Dermatological Science 12/2005; 40(2):85-94. DOI:10.1016/j.jdermsci.2005.07.006 · 3.42 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is a new noninvasive imaging technique. In this study, it was used for the investigation of contact dermatitis and psoriasis. In these common inflammatory skin diseases the value of OCT for quantification and monitoring of the changes in comparison with other bioengineering methods was evaluated. Repeated measurements were performed in healthy volunteers after experimental induction of irritant contact dermatitis and in patients with psoriasis. In the OCT images, the thickness of the epidermis and the signal attenuation coefficient in the upper dermis were evaluated. The changes were compared with measurements of transepidermal water loss, hydration, skin colour and surface roughness, and with high-frequency ultrasound measurements. In irritant dermatitis and psoriasis, thickening of the epidermis was detected and could be monitored over time. The light scattering in the upper dermis was lower than in healthy skin. This was interpreted to be due to the inflammation and oedema, leading to a less-dense arrangement of the collagen fibres. The changes in the OCT images did not significantly correlate with the changes shown by the other methods. OCT is an interesting tool for investigation of inflammatory skin diseases. It is a simple method for determination of epidermal thickness and therefore provides, in addition to other methods, information on the severity of the disease and on treatment effects.
    Archives for Dermatological Research 07/2003; 295(2):50-5. DOI:10.1007/s00403-003-0390-y · 1.90 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is a new and promising diagnostic technique for investigation of skin tumours. We describe a method that makes evaluation and definition of specific morphologic structures of skin tumours via OCT more accurate. We investigated three patients with basal cell carcinoma and three patients with melanocytic nevi. Three-dimensional (3D) images were obtained from these skin tumours via OCT according to previously applied marks, which were tattooed with special histological marking dye after excision of the tumours. Corresponding to these marks, we investigated serial histological sections (haematoxylin&eosin staining). We could prove similar morphological structures both in OCT and histology. Due to tissue deformation, the compared measurements of structures like cell nests or epidermal thickness were slightly deviated. However, by this method we could prove similar tissue formations in OCT and histology. Due to the deformation by histological processing and slightly different sectioning levels, the comparison of histological pictures and OCT images seems difficult. Nevertheless, in two cases it was possible to demonstrate the same morphological structures with OCT imaging and histological investigation. Our method could play an important role for further evaluation of OCT images. We estimate better evaluation of OCT imaging using a 3D reconstruction method.
    Skin Research and Technology 08/2004; 10(3):169-73. DOI:10.1111/j.1600-0846.2004.00038.x · 1.31 Impact Factor
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