The ability to discern malignant from benign tissue in excised human breast specimens in Breast Conservation Surgery (BCS) was evaluated using a prototype single frequency terahertz radiation. Terahertz (THz) images of the specimens in reflection mode were obtained by employing a gas laser source and mechanical scanning. The images were correlated with optical histological micrographs of the same specimens, and a mean discrimination of 73% was found for five out of six samples using Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC) analysis. This result is similar to what has previously been obtained using Terahertz pulsed imaging (TPI) techniques. We will discuss the specific advantages of Single frequency THz imaging (SFTI) compared with TPI for potentially allowing the development of much faster, more compact and less expensive cancer imaging systems that could be adapted for employment in the operating room. The system design and characterization of the prototype SFTI system are discussed in detail. The initial results are encouraging but further development of the technology and clinical evaluation is needed to evaluate its feasibility in the clinical environment.
Sigfrid K. Yngvesson, Andrew Karellas, Stephen Glick, Ashraf Khan, Paul R. Siqueira, Patrick A. Kelly, and Benjamin St. Peter, "Breast cancer margin detection with a single frequency terahertz imaging system," Proc. SPIE 9706, Optical Interactions with Tissue and Cells XXVII, 970603 (Presented at SPIE BiOS: February 14, 2016; Published: 7 March 2016); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2216385.
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