Abstract

Human error is the most significant factor attributed to incompatible blood transfusions. A spectrophotometric approach to blood typing has been developed by examining the spectral slopes of dilute red blood cell (RBC) suspensions in saline, in the presence and absence of various antibodies, offering a technique for the quantitative determination of agglutination intensity [Transfusion 39, 1051, 1999]. We offer direct theoretical prediction of the observed change in slope in the 6601000nm range through the use of the T-matrix approach and Lorenz–Mie theory for light scattering by dilute RBC suspensions. Following a numerical simulation using the T-matrix code, we present a simplified sensing method for detecting agglutination. The sensor design has been prototyped, fully characterized, and evaluated through a complete set of tests with over 60 RBC samples and compared with the full spectrophotometric method. The LED and photodiode pairs are found to successfully reproduce the spectroscopic determination of red blood cell agglutination.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

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