Preterm birth (PTB) presents a serious medical heath concern throughout the world and maintains a high incidence rate in both developed and developing countries ranging between 11-15%, respectively. PTB can be caused by many different morbidities and ultimately results in the disorganization of cervical collagen and the premature alteration of the cervix mechanical properties. Changes in cervical collagen orientation and distribution may prove to be a predictor of PTB. Polarization imaging is an effective means to measure optical anisotropy in birefringent materials such as those rich in collagen. Non-invasive, in-vivo full-field Mueller Matrix polarimetry (MMP) imaging was conducting using a modified colposcope in a clinical study comparing collagen orientation and distribution between non-pregnant and pregnant patients. Six patients threatening PTB were imaged at the Jackson Memorial Hospital Triage Unit and six non-pregnant patients were image at Florida International University STAR center. In pregnant women collagen distributions changed depending on patient age and number of pregnancies in the non-pregnant population age played an important role in collagen organization.
Joseph Chue-Sang, Mariacarla Gonzalez, Nola A. Holness, Ilyas Saytashev, Amir Gandjbakhche, Victor V. Chernomordik, and Jessica C. Ramella-Roman, "Comparison of collagen orientation and distribution in-vivo between non-pregnant and pregnant human cervix using Mueller Matrix polarimetry (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10472, Diagnosis and Treatment of Diseases in the Breast and Reproductive System IV, 1047205 (Presented at SPIE BiOS: January 27, 2018; Published: 14 March 2018); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2290595.5751476540001.
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