Fiber-optic probes are widely used in optical spectroscopy of biological tissues and other turbid media. Only limited information exists, however, on the ways in which the illumination-collection geometry and the overall probe design influence the interrogation of media. We have investigated both experimentally and computationally the effect of probe-to-target distance (PTD) on the diffuse reflectance collected from an isotropically (Lambertian) scattering target and an agar-based tissue phantom. Studies were conducted with three probes characterized by either common (single-fiber) or separate (two bifurcated multifiber probes) illumination and collection channels. This study demonstrates that PTD, probe design, and tissue scattering anisotropy influence the extent of the transport of light into the medium, the light-collection efficiency, and the sampling volume of collected light. The findings can be applied toward optimization of fiber-optic probe designs for quantitative optical spectroscopy of turbid media including biological tissues.
© 2004 Optical Society of AmericaPDF Article