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Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol Oral Radiol Endod. 2009 Sep;108(3):425-9. doi: 10.1016/j.tripleo.2009.05.035.

In vivo imaging of human labial glands using advanced optical coherence tomography.

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  • 1Resident, Division of Oral and Dental Surgery, Department of Advanced Medicine, National Hospital for Geriatric Medicine, National Center for Geriatrics and Gerontology, Obu, Aichi, Japan.



Optical coherence tomography (OCT) has emerged as a high-resolution noninvasive clinical imaging application. The purpose of this study was to show OCT images of human labial glands obtained using a swept-source (SS) OCT system.


Labial gland OCT imaging was carried out using our new SS-OCT system for 5 healthy volunteers using a hand-held in vivo OCT scanning probe. The labial tissue was scanned in a superior to inferior direction in 2 and 3 dimensions.


The resulting 2- and 3-dimensional ultrahigh-resolution images of in vivo OCT human labial minor salivary glands revealed the epithelium, connective tissue, lobes, and duct. OCT was capable of providing simultaneous and noninvasive structural information with high resolution.


This clinical imaging modality promises to have clinical impact in the diagnosis of such conditions as Sjögren syndrome and xerostomia.

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