Translator Disclaimer
9 February 2012 Clinical study of imaging skin cancer margins using polarized light imaging
Author Affiliations +
Skin cancer is most commons type of cancer in United States that occur on sun-exposed cosmetically sensitive areas like face, neck, and forearms. Surgical excision of skin cancer is challenging as more than one-third the actual margins extend beyond the clinically determined margins. Polarized light camera (polCAM) provides images of the superficial layers of the tissue with enhanced contrast which was used to image skin cancer margins. In a NIH-funded pilot study polCAM was used to image skin cancer in patients undergoing Mohs micrographic surgery for skin cancer. Polarized light imaging utilizes the polarization properties of light to create an image of a lesion comprised only of light scattering from the superficial layers of the skin which yields a characteristic "fabric pattern" of the putative lesion and the surrounding normal tissue. In several case studies conducted with a system developed for the clinic, we have found that skin cancer disrupts this fabric pattern, allowing the doctor a new means of identifying the margins of the lesion. Data is acquired before the patient underwent surgery. The clinically determined skin cancer margins were compared with margins determined by examination of the polCAM images. The true margins were provided by the dermatophathologist on examination of the frozen sections. Our initial data suggests that the contrast due to polarization changes associated with cancerous lesions can elucidate margins that were not recognized by the surgeon under normal conditions but were later confirmed by the pathologist.
© (2012) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Ravikant Samatham, Ken Lee, and Steven L. Jacques "Clinical study of imaging skin cancer margins using polarized light imaging", Proc. SPIE 8207, Photonic Therapeutics and Diagnostics VIII, 82070O (9 February 2012);


Back to Top