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25 April 2005 Characterization of atherosclerotic plaque by reflection spectroscopy and thermography: a comparison
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Many methods for detecting and measuring vulnerable atherosclerotic plaques have been proposed. These include reflection spectroscopy, thermography, ultrasound, computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). This paper presents an analysis and a comparison of two of these methods, near-infrared reflection spectroscopy (NIRS) and thermography. Most of the published literature evaluate methods statistically. A more analytic approach will make it easier to compare the different methods and determine if the measured signal will be strong enough in a real measurement situation. This is the approach taken in this article. Eight samples of human aorta were examined by NIRS and subsequently prepared for histology. A total of 28 measurement points were selected. A measure of the lipid content based on reflection spectra is proposed. Comparisons of this lipid measure with histology show that the lipid content in the plaques yields relatively small changes in the value of this lipid-index. Reflectance spectra from models based on the diffusion approximation for total reflectance were simulated. Temperature measurements were performed on three Watanabe heritable hyperlipidemic (WHHL) rabbits and one New Zealand white (NZW) rabbit with a thermistor-type intravascular temperature sensor. The measurements gave no significant signals which correlated with the subsequent histology. A simple analytic model was developed which indicates that a temperature increase of more than 0.01-0.04 °C at the surface of a vessel wall, due to inflammation in a plaque, is unlikely. Such a small temperature difference will probably be obscured by normal variation in the vessel wall temperature.
© (2005) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Magnus B. Lilledahl, Olav A. Haugen, Lise Lyngsnes Randeberg, and Lars Othar Svaasand "Characterization of atherosclerotic plaque by reflection spectroscopy and thermography: a comparison", Proc. SPIE 5686, Photonic Therapeutics and Diagnostics, (25 April 2005);

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