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Optical properties of tissue measured using terahertz pulsed imaging.

Berry, E., Fitzgerald, A.J., Zinov'ev, N.N., Walker, G.C., Homer-Vanniasinkam, S., Sudworth, C.D., Miles, R.E., Chamberlain, J.M. and Smith, M.A. (2003) Optical properties of tissue measured using terahertz pulsed imaging. Proceedings of SPIE: Medical Imaging 2003: Physics of Medical Imaging, 5030. pp. 459-470. ISSN 1605-7422

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The first demonstrations of terahertz imaging in biomedicine were made several years ago, but few data are available on the optical properties of human tissue at terahertz frequencies. A catalogue of these properties has been established to estimate variability and determine the practicality of proposed medical applications in terms of penetration depth, image contrast and reflection at boundaries. A pulsed terahertz imaging system with a useful bandwidth 0.5-2.5 THz was used. Local ethical committee approval was obtained. Transmission measurements were made through tissue slices of thickness 0.08 to 1 mm, including tooth enamel and dentine, cortical bone, skin, adipose tissue and striated muscle. The mean and standard deviation for refractive index and linear attenuation coefficient, both broadband and as a function of frequency, were calculated. The measurements were used in simple models of the transmission, reflection and propagation of terahertz radiation in potential medical applications. Refractive indices ranged from 1.5 ± 0.5 for adipose tissue to 3.06 ± 0.09 for tooth enamel. Significant differences (P<0.05) were found between the broadband refractive indices of a number of tissues. Terahertz radiation is strongly absorbed in tissue so reflection imaging, which has lower penetration requirements than transmission, shows promise for dental or dermatological applications.

Item Type: Article
Copyright, Publisher and Additional Information: Copyright © 2003 SPIE--Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers. This paper was published in Proceedings of SPIE: Medical Imaging 2003 and is made available as an electronic reprint with permission of SPIE. One print or electronic copy may be made for personal use only. Systematic or multiple reproduction, distribution to multiple locations via electronic or other means, duplication of any material in this paper for a fee or for commercial purposes, or modification of the content of the paper are prohibited.
Keywords: refractive index, linear absorption coefficient, human tissue, terahertz pulsed imaging, medical applications
Institution: The University of Leeds
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Medicine and Health (Leeds) > School of Medicine (Leeds) > Leeds Institute of Genetics, Health and Therapeutics (LIGHT) > Academic Unit of Medical Physics (Leeds)
The University of Leeds > University of Leeds Research Centres and Institutes > Centre for Medical Imaging Research (Leeds)
The University of Leeds > Faculty of Engineering (Leeds) > School of Electronic & Electrical Engineering (Leeds)
Depositing User: Elizabeth Berry
Date Deposited: 13 Mar 2006
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2014 19:09
Status: Published
Refereed: Yes
Identification Number: 10.1117/12.479993
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/761

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