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Ann N Y Acad Sci. 1998 Feb 9;838:95-107.

New technology for high-speed and high-resolution optical coherence tomography.

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  • 1Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and Research Laboratory of Electronics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge 02139, USA.


Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is an optical imaging technique that is capable of performing micron-scale, cross-sectional imaging of internal microstructure in biological systems. OCT is analogous to ultrasound B mode imaging except that it uses light rather than sound and performs imaging by measuring the back-scattered intensity of light from structures in tissue. We describe recent advances in OCT technology including the application of short pulse solid state lasers based on Ti: Al2O3 and Cr: Mg2SiO4 to enable high-resolution, high-speed imaging as well as the development of OCT catheter/endoscope delivery to permit imaging of internal organ systems. OCT enables the nonexcisional, in situ, real-time imaging of tissue microstructure and is thus a powerful and promising technique for optical biopsy.

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