Use of Vibrational Optical Coherence Tomography in Dermatology

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Frederick H. Silver, Lisa L. Silver

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Published: 16 November 2018 | Article Type :


In 2014, an estimated 5 million people were treated for skin cancer with a cost of 8.1 billion dollars. While most dermatologists can identify different skin lesions visually, they can’t identify the lesion depth or margins without performing a surgical excision and waiting for frozen marginal biopsies. Increased tissue stiffness (also termed modulus) has been shown to be a characteristic of potential tumor metastasis and is characterized by the abnormal deposition of collagen fibers, the major component of extracellular matrix (ECM). This leads to altered tissue mechanical properties of skin.
We have developed a technique to combine optical coherence tomography (OCT) imaging with vibrational analysis (VOCT) to image and to analyze the physical properties of tissues non-invasively and non-destructively. Using images generated by OCT and maps of the modulus as a function of position, we show that it is possible to determine the margins of lesions. Although lesion margins can be marked with VOCT, it is important that a new generation of OCT instruments be developed to more accurately measure lesion depths. Lesion depth analysis would give the Mohs surgeon a better understanding of the extent of the lesion and assist in planning for surgical excision.
In this paper we introduce the use of vibrational optical coherence tomography as a new tool available to non-invasive and non-destructively evaluate skin lesions in the clinic.

Keywords: Collagen, elastic tissue, fat, lesion margins, cancer, vibrational optical coherence tomography.optical coherence tomography, resonant frequency.

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Frederick H. Silver, Lisa L. Silver. (2018-11-16). "Use of Vibrational Optical Coherence Tomography in Dermatology." *Volume 1*, 2, 3-8