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Phys Med Biol. 2004 Apr 7;49(7):1165-81.

Concentration and oxygen saturation of haemoglobin of 50 breast tumours determined by time-domain optical mammography.

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  • 1Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt, Abbestrasse 2-12, 10587 Berlin, Germany.


Using a dual-wavelength (670 nm, 785 nm) time-domain scanning instrument we have recorded optical mammograms of 93 patients suspected of having breast cancer which was subsequently assessed histologically. Among 65 histologically confirmed carcinomas, 54 were detectable in at least one of two optical mammograms recorded of each tumour-bearing breast in craniocaudal and mediolateral projection. Optical mammograms were based on photon counts in selected time windows of measured distributions of times of flight of photons. Optical properties of 50 carcinomas investigated at both wavelengths were derived by modelling the breast as partially homogeneous infinite slab with an embedded spherical inhomogeneity representing the tumour and by calculating the diffraction of photon density waves. In selected cases, additional information about the location of the tumour along the compression direction was used that was obtained from scans at selected offsets between source and detector optical fibres. A correlation plot of haemoglobin concentration and blood oxygen saturation of tumours and healthy tissue shows good separation between both kinds of tissue. The majority of carcinomas exhibited increased total haemoglobin concentration compared to healthy tissue.

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