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Journal of Biomedical Optics • Open Access

Comparison of spectroscopically measured finger and forearm tissue ethanol concentration to blood and breath ethanol measurements
Author(s): Trent Ridder; Benjamin J. Ver Steeg; Bentley D. Laaksonen; Edward L. Hull

Paper Abstract

Previous works investigated a spectroscopic technique that offered a promising alternative to blood and breath assays for determining in vivo alcohol concentration. Although these prior works measured the dorsal forearm, we report the results of a 26-subject clinical study designed to evaluate the spectroscopic technique at a finger measurement site through comparison to contemporaneous forearm spectroscopic, venous blood, and breath measurements. Through both Monte Carlo simulation and experimental data, it is shown that tissue optical probe design has a substantial impact on the effective path-length of photons through the skin and the signal-to-noise ratio of the spectroscopic measurements. Comparison of the breath, blood, and tissue assays demonstrated significant differences in alcohol concentration that are attributable to both assay accuracy and alcohol pharmacokinetics. Similar to past works, a first order kinetic model is used to estimate the fraction of concentration variance explained by alcohol pharmacokinetics (72.6-86.7%). A significant outcome of this work was significantly improved pharmacokinetic agreement with breath (arterial) alcohol of the finger measurement (mean kArt-Fin = 0.111 min−1) relative to the forearm measurement (mean kArt-For = 0.019 min−1) that is likely due to the increased blood perfusion of the finger.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 February 2011
PDF: 12 pages
J. Biomed. Opt. 16(2) 028003 doi: 10.1117/1.3535594
Published in: Journal of Biomedical Optics Volume 16, Issue 2
Show Author Affiliations
Trent Ridder, TruTouch Technologies Inc. (United States)
Benjamin J. Ver Steeg, TruTouch Technologies Inc. (United States)
Bentley D. Laaksonen, TruTouch Technologies Inc. (United States)
Edward L. Hull, VeraLight, Inc. (United States)

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