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Hand-held near-infrared (NIR) optical imagers are developed by various researchers towards non-invasive clinical breast imaging. Unlike these existing imagers that can perform only reflectance imaging, a generation-2 (Gen-2) hand-held optical imager has been recently developed to perform both reflectance and transillumination imaging. The unique forked design of the hand-held probe head(s) allows for reflectance imaging (as in ultrasound) and transillumination or compressed imaging (as in X-ray mammography). Phantom studies were performed to demonstrate two-dimensional (2D) target detection via reflectance and transillumination imaging at various target depths (1–5 cm deep) and using simultaneous multiple point illumination approach. It was observed that 0.45 cc targets were detected up to 5 cm deep during transillumination, but limited to 2.5 cm deep during reflectance imaging. Additionally, implementing appropriate data post-processing techniques along with a polynomial fitting approach, to plot 2D surface contours of the detected signal, yields distinct target detectability and localization. The ability of the gen-2 imager to perform both reflectance and transillumination imaging allows its direct comparison to ultrasound and X-ray mammography results, respectively, in future clinical breast imaging studies.
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Gonzalez, J.; Roman, M.; Hall, M.; Godavarty, A. Gen-2 Hand-Held Optical Imager towards Cancer Imaging: Reflectance and Transillumination Phantom Studies. Sensors 2012, 12, 1885-1897.
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