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J Biomed Opt. 2003 Apr;8(2):273-80.

Optoacoustic tomography using time-resolved interferometric detection of surface displacement.

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  • 1Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139, USA.


We introduce a minimally invasive technique for optoacoustic imaging of turbid media using optical interferometric detection of surface displacement produced by thermoelastic stress transients. The technique exploits endogenous or exogenous optical contrast of heterogeneous tissues and the low attenuation of stress wave propagation to localize and image subsurface absorbers in optically turbid media. We present a system that utilizes a time-resolved high-resolution interferometer capable of angstrom-level displacement resolution and nanosecond temporal resolution to detect subsurface blood vessels within model tissue phantoms and a human forearm in vivo.

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