Advances in optical imaging of biomedical media

R. R. Alfano, S. G. Demos, S. K. Gayen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


In this article, we have presented an overview of fundamental issues involved in mediphotonic imaging, and reviewed some of the emerging techniques for early-light transillumination imaging of body organs. The results on human breast tissues presented here, together with the data accumulated and advances made by researchers around the globe, not only demonstrate the feasibility of optical imaging as a clinical procedure but indicate a road map to reach that goal. The milestones include evaluation of relative merits of available approaches for a particular imaging application; selection of diagnostic wavelengths, as well as sources to generate and detectors to monitor light at those wavelengths; accumulation of data on optical, spectroscopic, and transport properties of tissues and organs; in vivo testing; prototype instrumentation development; clinical trials; governmental approval; cost analysis and marketing; and finally system improvement based on feedback from end users. A new era of optical clinical imaging is at the door!.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)248-271
Number of pages24
JournalAnnals of the New York Academy of Sciences
StatePublished - 1997
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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