Motivation and background: Melanoma, the fastest growing cancer worldwide, kills more than one person every hour in the United States. Determining the depth and distribution of dermal melanin and hemoglobin adds physio-morphologic information to the current diagnostic standard, cellular morphology, to further develop noninvasive methods to discriminate between melanoma and benign skin conditions.
Purpose: To compare the performance of a multimode dermoscopy system (SkinSpect), which is designed to quantify and map in three dimensions, in vivo melanin and hemoglobin in skin, and to validate this with histopathology and three dimensional reflectance confocal microscopy (RCM) imaging.
Methods: Sequentially capture SkinSpect and RCM images of suspect lesions and nearby normal skin and compare this with histopathology reports, RCM imaging allows noninvasive observation of nuclear, cellular and structural detail in 1-5 m-thin optical sections in skin, and detection of pigmented skin lesions with sensitivity of ~ 90-95% and specificity of ~ 70-80%. The multimode imaging dermoscope combines polarization (cross and parallel), autofluorescence and hyperspectral imaging to noninvasively map the distribution of melanin, collagen and hemoglobin oxygenation in pigmented skin lesions.
Results: We compared in vivo features of ten melanocytic lesions extracted by SkinSpect and RCM imaging, and correlated them to histopathologic results. We present results of two melanoma cases (in situ and invasive), and compare with in vivo features from eight benign lesions. Melanin distribution at different depths and hemodynamics, including abnormal vascularity, detected by both SkinSpect and RCM will be discussed.
Conclusion: Diagnostic features such as dermal melanin and hemoglobin concentration provided in SkinSpect skin analysis for melanoma and normal pigmented lesions can be compared and validated using results from RCM and histopathology.