Article

Time-Domain Optical Mammography SoftScan

ART, Advanced Research Technologies, Saint-Laurent (Quebec), Canada.
Academic Radiology (Impact Factor: 2.08). 09/2005; 12(8):934-47. DOI: 10.1016/j.acra.2005.05.006
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Near-infrared (NIR) technology appears promising as a noninvasive technique for breast cancer screening and diagnosis. The technology capitalizes on the relative transparency of human tissue in this spectral range and its sensitivity to the main components of the breast: water, lipid, and hemoglobin. In this study, the authors report quantitative measurements of these components and the functional contrast between healthy and diseased tissue.
A four-wavelength time domain optical imaging system was used to perform noninvasive NIR measurements in the breast of 49 women both pre- and postmenopausal, ages 24-80. Algorithms based on a diffusive model of light transport provided absolute bulk and local values of breast constituent concentrations.
Important variations in the functional and structural NIR properties of the breast were observed. Demographics trend were noticed in accordance with breast physiology. In the 23 cases imaged with suspicious masses, the optical images were consistent with the mammographic findings. Substantial contrast between masses and adjacent tissue is observed. Moreover, consistent differences between malign and benign cases are found with optical imaging.
The results of this pilot study illustrate the sensitivity of optical techniques to the composition of the breast. In addition, preliminary data suggest that benign and malignant tumors can potentially be noninvasively differentiated with optical imaging. Moreover, statistically significant discrimination based on deoxy-hemoglobin content between malign and benign cases was found with optical imaging (P = .0184, one-tailed t test).

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