Abstract

Polarization Sensitive Optical Coherence Tomography (PS-OCT) was used to image the reduction of birefringence in biological tissue due to thermal damage. Through simultaneous detection of the amplitude of signal fringes in orthogonal polarization states formed by interference of light backscattered from turbid media and a mirror in the reference arm of a Michelson interferometer, changes in the polarization due to the optical phase delay between light propagating along the fast and slow axes of birefringent media were measured. Inasmuch as fibrous structures in many biological tissues influence the polarization state of light backscattered, PS-OCT is a potentially useful technique to image the structural properties of turbid biological materials. Birefringence of collagen, a constituent of many biological tissues, is reduced by denaturation that takes place at a temperature between 56-65 °C, thus providing an “optical marker” for thermal damage. Images showing reduction of birefringence due to thermal damage in porcine tendon and skin are presented and demonstrate the potential of PS-OCT for burn depth assessment.

© Optical Society of America

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    [CrossRef] [PubMed]
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    [CrossRef]
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    [CrossRef]

Other (17)

R. C. Youngquist, S. Carr, and D. E. N. Davies, "Optical coherence-domain reflectometry: a new optical evaluation technique," Opt. Lett. 12, 158-160 (1987).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

K. Takada, I. Yokohama, K. Chida, and J. Noda, "New measurement system for fault location in optical waveguide devices based on an interferometric technique," Appl. Opt. 26, 1603-1606 (1987).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

B. L. Danielson and C. D. Whittenberg, "Guided-wave reflectometry with micrometer resolution," Appl. Opt. 26, 2836 (1987).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

D. Huang et al., "Optical Coherence Tomography," Science 254, 1178-1181 (1991).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

A. F. Fercher, K. Mengedoht, and W. Werner, "Eye-length measurement by interferometry with partially coherent light," Opt. Lett. 13, 186-188 (1988).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

J. M. Schmitt, M. Yadlowsky, and R. F. Bonner, "Subsurface imaging of living skin with optical coherence microscopy," Dermatology 191, 93 (1995).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

V. M. Gelikonov, G. V. Gelikonov, R. V. Kuranov, K. I. Pravdenko, A. M. Sergeev, F. I. Feldchtein, Y. I. Khanin, and D. V. Shabanov, "Coherent optical tomography of microscopic inhomogeneities in biological tissues," JETP Lett 61, 158-162 (1995).

J. Welzel, E. Lankenau, R. Birngruber, and R. Engelhardt, "Optical coherence tomography of the human skin," J. Am. Acad. Dermatol. 37, 958-963 (1997).
[CrossRef]

G. J. Tearney, M. E. Brezinski, B. E. Bouma, S. A. Boppart, C. Pitris, J. F. Southern, and J. G. Fujimoto, "In vivo endoscopic optical biopsy with optical coherence tomography," Science 276, 2037-2039 (1997).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

A. M. Sergeev, V. M. Gelikonov, G. V. Gelikonov, F. I. Feldchtein, R. V. Kuranov, and N. D. Gladkova, "In vivo endoscopic OCT imaging of precancer and cancer states of human mucosa," Optics Express 1, 432{440 (1997), http://epubs.osa.org/oearchive/source/2788.htm.
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

M. R. Hee, D. Huang, E. A. Swanson, and J. G. Fujimoto, "Polarization-sensitive low-coherence reflectometer for birefringence characterization and ranging," J. Opt. Soc. Am. B 9, 903-908 (1992).
[CrossRef]

J. F. de Boer, T. E. Milner, M. J. C. van Gemert, and J. S. Nelson, "Two-dimensional birefringence imaging in biological tissue using polarization sensitive optical coherence tomography," Opt. Lett. 22, 934-936 (1997).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

M. J. Everett, K. Schoenenberger, B. W. Colston Jr., and L. B. Da Silva, "Birefringence characterization of biological tissue by use of optical coherence tomography," Opt. Lett. 23, 228-230 (1998).
[CrossRef]

Z. Chen, T. E. Milner, D. Dave, and J. S. Nelson, "Optical Doppler Tomographic Imaging of Fluid Flow Velocity in Highly Scattering Media," Opt. Lett. 22, 64-66 (1997).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

W. V. Sorin and D. M. Baney, "A Simple Intensity Noise Reduction Technique for Optical Low-Coherence Reflectometry," IEEE Photonics Tech. Lett. 4, 1404-1406 (1992).
[CrossRef]

D. J. Maitland and J. T. Walsh, "Quantitative measurements of linear birefringence during heating of native collagen," Lasers Surg. Med. 20, 310-318 (1997).
[CrossRef] [PubMed]

J. M. Schmitt and S. H. Xiang, "Cross-polarized backscatter in optical coherence tomography of biological tissue," Opt. Lett. 23, 1060-1062 (1998).
[CrossRef]

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Figures (5)

Fig. 1.
Fig. 1.

Schematic of the PS-OCT system. SLD: superluminescent diode, L: lens, P: polarizer, BS: beam splitter, QWP: quarter wave plate, NDF: neutral density filter, PBS: polarizing beam splitter, PZT: Piezoelectric transducer. Two dimensional images were formed by lateral movement of the sample at constant velocity (x-direction), repeated after each longitudinal displacement (z-direction).

Fig. 2.
Fig. 2.

OCT and PS-OCT images of porcine tendon, slowly heated in a rose chamber. Image size: 200 × 400 μm, pixel size 1×2 μm. Upper panel: OCT images, Lower panel: PS-OCT images. Temperature and dynamic range: a) 25 °C, 47 dB, b) 45 °C, 46 dB, c) 55 °C, 46 dB, d) 60 °C, 43 dB, e) 70 °C, 36 dB, and f) 77 °C, 25 dB. White lines in PS-OCT images are contours at 30° (white to gray transition) and 60° (gray to black transition) phase retardation levels, respectively.

Fig. 3.
Fig. 3.

OCT and PS-OCT images of ex vivo porcine skin. Image size: 400 × 800 μm, pixel size 2×4 μm. a) OCT image of normal skin, dynamic range 40 dB, b) PS-OCT image of normal skin, c) OCT image of thermally damaged skin, dynamic range 40 dB, d) PS-OCT image of thermally damaged skin. White lines in the PS-OCT images are contours at 30° (white to gray transition) and 60° (gray to black transition) phase retardation levels, respectively.

Fig. 4.
Fig. 4.

OCT and PS-OCT images of ex vivo porcine skin. Image size: 5×1 mm, pixel size 10 × 10 μm. From left to right, a burned region, a region of radial heat diffusion, and normal skin. Upper panel shows OCT image, dynamic range was 48 dB. Lower panel shows PS-OCT image. White lines are contours at 30° (white to gray transition) and 60° (gray to black transition) phase retardation levels, respectively.

Fig. 5.
Fig. 5.

Average of 100 depth profiles recorded in normal and burned porcine skin. Solid line: Normal skin, averages were calculated from the extreme right one millimeter in Figure 4a. Dashed line: Burned skin, averages were calculated from the extreme left one millimeter in Figure 4a. Averages were calculated from depth profiles starting at the tissue surface.

Equations (3)

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A H = R ( z ) cos ( 2 k 0 Δ z + 2 α ) e ( ΩΔ z c ) 2 sin ( k 0 ) ,
A V = R ( z ) cos ( 2 k 0 Δ z ) e ( ΩΔ z c ) 2 sin ( k 0 ) ,
ϕ = arctan I H ( z ) I V ( z ) = k 0

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