Radio-frequency ablation (RFA) creates a thermal lesion in the atrial wall, with clearly recognizable optical and structural changes to the tissue. This can be detected by photoacoustic (PA) imaging, and used for monitoring of lesion depth, lesion functionality, and limiting excessive ablation. Porcine left atrium tissue can be split into three visually distinguishable regions, a thick white endocardium, pinkish myocardium and a thin gelatinous epicardium. In this study, we characterize the layered left atrium tissue in terms of the relevant photoacoustic parameters (wavelength, frequency content, imaging depth, lesion contrast). Previous studies in the literature targeted the photoacoustic characterization of fresh and ablated ventricular myocardium in the range of 650nm to 900nm. In this study we target the characterization of fresh and ablated left atrial tissue from 410nm to 1000nm, including the endocardium and epicardium. We generate the photoacoustic signals using a tunable pulsed laser source, and record those signals using either a broadband 1 mm hydrophone or a L12-3v transducer connected to the Verasonics machine for more realistic conditions. Initial experiments on fresh porcine tissue show that the presence of the endocardium and epicardium layers do affect the photoacoustic signal received. The signal recorded is representative of the difference in optical and mechanical properties between the layers. Ablated and non-ablated tissue also present differences in spectra. The determined optical contrast could be used in the PA monitoring of RFA lesion to monitor the extension of the lesion to the edge of the myocardium-epicardium border avoiding complications related to over ablation.
Sophinese Iskander-Rizk, Pieter Kruizinga, Antonius F. W. van der Steen, and Gijs van Soest, "Photoacoustic characterization of the left atrium wall: healthy and ablated tissue (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10064, Photons Plus Ultrasound: Imaging and Sensing 2017, 100640I (Presented at SPIE BiOS: January 29, 2017; Published: 24 April 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2249844.5379284467001.
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