In order to visualize melanin and blood concentrations and oxygen saturation in human skin tissue, a simple imaging technique based on multispectral diffuse reflectance images acquired at six wavelengths (500, 520, 540, 560, 580 and ) was developed. The technique utilizes multiple regression analysis aided by Monte Carlo simulation for diffuse reflectance spectra. Using the absorbance spectrum as a response variable and the extinction coefficients of melanin, oxygenated hemoglobin, and deoxygenated hemoglobin as predictor variables, multiple regression analysis provides regression coefficients. Concentrations of melanin and total blood are then determined from the regression coefficients using conversion vectors that are deduced numerically in advance, while oxygen saturation is obtained directly from the regression coefficients. Experiments with a tissue-like agar gel phantom validated the method. In vivo experiments with human skin of the human hand during upper limb occlusion and of the inner forearm exposed to UV irradiation demonstrated the ability of the method to evaluate physiological reactions of human skin tissue.
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