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J Biomed Opt. 2009 Jul-Aug;14(4):044032. doi: 10.1117/1.3207142.

Relationship between dermal birefringence and the skin surface roughness of photoaged human skin.

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  • 1Kanebo Cosmetics, Inc., Basic Research Laboratory, 5-3-28, Kotobuki, Odawara, Kanagawa 250-0002, Japan.


The dermal degeneration accompanying photoaging is considered to promote skin roughness features such as wrinkles. Our previous study demonstrated that polarization-sensitive spectral domain optical coherence tomography (PS-SD-OCT) enabled noninvasive three-dimensional evaluation of the dermal degeneration of photoaged skin as a change in dermal birefringence, mainly due to collagenous structures. Our purpose is to examine the relationship between dermal birefringence and elasticity and the skin morphology in the eye corner area using PS-SD-OCT. Nineteen healthy male subjects in their seventees were recruited as subjects. A transverse dermal birefringence map, automatically produced by the algorithm, did not show localized changes in the dermal birefringence in the part of the main horizontal wrinkle. The averaged upper dermal birefringence, however, showed depth-dependent correlation with the parameters of skin roughness significantly, suggesting that solar elastosis is a major factor for the progress of wrinkles. Age-dependent parameters of skin elasticity measured with Cutometer did not correlate with the parameters. These results suggest that the analysis of dermal birefringence using PS-SD-OCT enables the evaluation of photoaging-dependent upper dermal degeneration related to the change of skin roughness.

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