In vivo imaging of the microcirculation of the volar forearm using correlation mapping optical coherence tomography (OCT)

Biomedical Optics Express (Impact Factor: 3.65). 05/2011; 2(5):1184-93. DOI: 10.1364/BOE.2.001184
Source: PubMed


Correlation mapping optical coherence tomography (cmOCT) is a recently proposed technique that extends the capabilities of OCT to enable mapping of vasculature networks. The technique is achieved as a processing step on OCT intensity images that does not require any modification to existing OCT hardware. In this paper we apply the cmOCT processing technique to in vivo human imaging of the volar forearm. We illustrate that cmOCT can produce maps of the microcirculation that clearly follow the accepted anatomical structure. We demonstrate that the technique can extract parameters such as capillary density and vessel diameter. These parameters are key clinical markers for the early changes associated with microvascular diseases. Overall the presented results show that cmOCT is a powerful new tool that generates microcirculation maps in a safe non-invasive, non-contact technique which has clear clinical applications.

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    • "The correlation method is not involved with the static background artifacts, as pointed out in [19]. However, only the intensity (or amplitude) signals are adopted in the existing algorithms, i.e. intensity-correlation (IC) algorithm [5] [22], leading to a limited motion contrast. "
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    • "To compare the efficiency of programming environments one obvious parameter is to measure the speed of the algorithm implemented. The correlation-mapping (CM) algorithm was re-implemented[5] for each programming environment and then run for different data volumes. A simplified description of the CM algorithm (Fig. 1) indicates two image arrays and the movement of a kernel matrix over the images and the calculation of the correlation value for each position. "
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    DESCRIPTION: MATLAB , Java and Python are compared based on their capabilities to implement and optimize the correlation mapping algorithm. Correlation mapping is a post-processing algorithm applied to OCT volumes and utilizes the spatio-temporal variations in intensity to distinguish dynamic from static scatterers.
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    • "Dynamic speckle signals are rapidly decorrelated due to moving RBCs whereas the speckle fluctuation is relatively less evident in the surrounding tissues. This speckle de-correlation gives opportunity to contrast the blood flow within living tissues by calculating speckle variation between consecutive A-scans or B-frames, with the latter having enough sensitivity to detect slow flows [29, 39, 40]. Several intensity-based algorithms for vessel extraction have used amplitudesof the OCT signals emanating from vascular tissue beds, showing potential to obtain three-dimensional (3D) tissue perfusion map in vivo [37–42]. "
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    ABSTRACT: We report three-dimensional (3D) imaging of microcirculation within human cavity tissues in vivo using a high-speed swept-source optical coherence tomography (SS-OCT) at 1300 nm with a modified probe interface. Volumetric structural OCT images of the inner tissues of oral and nasal cavities are acquired with a field of view of 2 mm × 2 mm. Two types of disposable and detachable probe attachments are devised and applied to the port of the imaging probe of OCT system, enabling forward and side imaging scans for selective and easy access to specific cavity tissue sites. Blood perfusion is mapped with OCT-based microangiography from 3D structural OCT images, in which a novel vessel extraction algorithm is used to decouple dynamic light scattering signals, due to moving blood cells, from the background scattering signals due to static tissue elements. Characteristic tissue anatomy and microvessel architectures of various cavity tissue regions of a healthy human volunteer are identified with the 3D OCT images and the corresponding 3D vascular perfusion maps at a level approaching capillary resolution. The initial finding suggests that the proposed method may be engineered into a promising tool for evaluating and monitoring tissue microcirculation and its alteration within a wide-range of cavity tissues in the patients with various pathological conditions.
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