Skin imaging is a powerful, noninvasive method used with potential to aid in the computer-assisted diagnosis of numerous dermatological diseases and assess overall skin health. By tracking the evolution of various skin features, we can monitor skin health. One interesting feature is known as the “microrelief,” which are the fine micrometer scale furrows and ridges that appear like irregular geometric patterns on the skin surface. However, it is difficult to accurately observe the microrelief structure and its evolution over time due to the micrometer dimensions of the microrelief and the 3D non-rigid nature of the body. Registration and matching of the same skin region are further complicated by noisy and distorted optical images. We have designed a high resolution, handheld optical system to image the skin microrelief. The device has potential to be used in clinical settings since it is small and lightweight. With proper experimental design, we are able to acquire repeatable images of a selected skin patch to monitor over time. Additionally, we have developed methods for registration of skin patches and analyzing skin feature stability. Using real and synthetic skin images, we demonstrate that we can accurately and robustly register large area skin images and identify skin pattern correspondences. Essentially, through repeatable, high resolution imaging, we can monitor the microrelief structure in select individuals over a period of 1-2 years. This has interesting applications because we can use the microreliefs for health monitoring and as a map for the body since we notice that these features are stable over time in healthy individuals.
Ina Kundu, Xian Du, and Brian Anthony, "Imaging platforms for registering and analyzing the skin microrelief structure," Proc. SPIE 10600, Health Monitoring of Structural and Biological Systems XII, 106000U (Presented at SPIE Smart Structures and Materials + Nondestructive Evaluation and Health Monitoring: March 06, 2018; Published: 27 March 2018); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2296014.
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