Journal of Biomedical OpticsInfluence of multiple scattering and absorption on the full scattering profile and the isobaric point in tissue
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Light reflectance and transmission from soft tissue has been utilized in noninvasive clinical measurement devices such as the photoplethysmograph (PPG) and reflectance pulse oximeter. Incident light on the skin travels into the underlying layers and is in part reflected back to the surface, in part transferred and in part absorbed. Most methods of near infrared (NIR) spectroscopy focus on the volume reflectance from a semi-infinite sample, while very few measure transmission. We have previously shown that examining the full scattering profile (angular distribution of exiting photons) provides more comprehensive information when measuring from a cylindrical tissue. Furthermore, an isobaric point was found which is not dependent on changes in the reduced scattering coefficient. The angle corresponding to this isobaric point depends on the tissue diameter. We investigated the role of multiple scattering and absorption on the full scattering profile of a cylindrical tissue. First, we define the range in which multiple scattering occurs for different tissue diameters. Next, we examine the role of the absorption coefficient in the attenuation of the full scattering profile. We demonstrate that the absorption linearly influences the intensity at each angle of the full scattering profile and, more importantly, the absorption does not change the position of the isobaric point. The findings of this work demonstrate a realistic model for optical tissue measurements such as NIR spectroscopy, PPG, and pulse oximetery.