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Proceedings Paper

Photoacoustic measurement of epidermal melanin
Author(s): John A. Viator; Lars Othar Svaasand; Guillermo Aguilar; Bernard Choi; J. Stuart Nelson M.D.
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Paper Abstract

Most dermatologic laser procedures must consider epidermal melanin, as it is a broadband optical absorber which affects subsurface fluence, effectively limiting the amount of light reaching the dermis and targeted chromophores. An accurate method for quantifying epidermal melanin content would aid clinicians in determining proper light dosage for therapeutic laser procedures. While epidermal melanin content has been quantified non-invasively using optical methods, there is currently no way to determine the melanin distribution in the epidermis. We have developed a photoacoustic probe that uses a Q-switched, frequency doubled Nd:YAG laser operating at 532nm to generate acoustic pulses in skin in vivo. The probe contained a piezoelectric element that detected photoacoustic waves which were then analyzed for epidermal melanin content, using a photoacoustic melanin index (PAMI). We tested 15 human subjects with skin types I--VI using the photoacoustic probe. We also present photoacoustic data for a human subject with vitiligo. Photoacoustic measurement showed melanin in the vitiligo subject was almost completely absent.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 July 2003
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 4960, Biomedical Optoacoustics IV, (1 July 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.477648
Show Author Affiliations
John A. Viator, Beckman Laser Institute (United States)
Lars Othar Svaasand, Univ. of Trondheim (Norway)
Beckman Laser Institute (United States)
Guillermo Aguilar, Beckman Laser Institute (United States)
Univ. of California/Irvine (United States)
Bernard Choi, Beckman Laser Institute (United States)
J. Stuart Nelson M.D., Beckman Laser Institute (United States)
Univ. of California/Irvine (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4960:
Biomedical Optoacoustics IV
Alexander A. Oraevsky, Editor(s)

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