Laser induced surface acoustic wave combined with phase sensitive optical coherence tomography for superficial tissue characterization: a solution for practical application

Chunhui Li, Guangying Guan, Fan Zhang, Ghulam Nabi, Ruikang K. Wang, Zhihong Huang (Lead / Corresponding author)

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Mechanical properties are important parameters that can be used to assess the physiologic conditions of biologic tissue. Measurements and mapping of tissue mechanical properties can aid in the diagnosis, characterisation and treatment of diseases. As a non-invasive, non-destructive and non-contact method, laser induced surface acoustic waves (SAWs) have potential to accurately characterise tissue elastic properties. However, challenge still exists when the laser is directly applied to the tissue because of potential heat generation due to laser energy deposition. This paper focuses on the thermal effect of the laser induced SAW on the tissue target and provides an alternate solution to facilitate its application in clinic environment. The solution proposed is to apply a thin agar membrane as surface shield to protect the tissue. Transient thermal analysis is developed and verified by experiments to study the effects of the high energy Nd:YAG laser pulse on the surface shield. The approach is then verified by measuring the mechanical property of skin in a Thiel mouse model. The results demonstrate a useful step toward the practical application of laser induced SAW method for measuring real elasticity of normal and diseased tissues in dermatology and other surface epithelia. © 2014 Optical Society of America
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1403-1418
Number of pages16
JournalBiomedical Optics Express
Issue number5
Early online date3 Apr 2014
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2014


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