We present a parametric optical coherence tomography (OCT) technique to improve contrast between malignant and healthy non-neoplastic tissue. The technique incorporates a fully automated method to extract tissue attenuation characteristics. Results are represented visually as a parametric en face image, where the parameter used for contrast is indicative of the relative optical attenuation coefficient of the tissue. We present the first parametric OCT images of human lymph nodes containing malignant cells, and demonstrate improved tissue contrast over en face OCT images.
This work presents a novel tissue-mimicking phantom for use in a range of optical coherence tomography (OCT) experiments. Such phantoms are critical in the development and assessment of new OCT techniques, but no previously published phantoms have become universally accepted. We present the first description of a phantom based on a fibrin matrix, which improves key attributes of previously published methods. It provides a biocompatible, optically transparent scaffold in which to incorporate organic and/or inorganic optical scattering materials. Its fabrication time is markedly shorter than many common phantoms, and its lifetime is longer than other biocompatible phantoms. The potential of fibrin phantoms incorporating Intralipid<sup>TM</sup> to introduce uniform optical scattering is demonstrated. The measured attenuation coefficient as a function of Intralipid concentration confirms the ability to control optical scattering. A bilayer phantom with distinct optical scattering in each layer is also presented.