Abstract

We describe a method for analyzing short-pulse laser propagation through tissues for the detection of tumors and inhomogeneities in tissues with the goal of developing a time-resolved optical tomography system. Traditional methods for analyzing photon transport in tissues usually involve the parabolic or diffusion approximation, which implies infinite speed of propagation of the optical signal. To overcome such limitations we calculate the transmitted and reflected intensity distributions, using the damped-wave hyperbolic P1 and the discrete-ordinates methods, for a wide range of laser, tissue, and tumor parameters. The results are compared with the parabolic diffusion P1 approximation.

© 2002 Optical Society of America

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