Near-IR Spectroscopy Performs Challenging Breast Imaging

Novus Light Technologies Today

February 18, 2014

By Sandra Henderson

Taking a ground-breaking approach to diagnostic imaging, engineers and radiologists at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire (US), have developed a new way to implement MRI/near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) technique that could be an option for women with dense breasts, which are harder to penetrate with traditional imaging equipment...

...The light technology itself, intensity modulated laser diodes, is not new. Rather, the implementation is unique, according to study author Michael A. Mastanduno. While in the past MRI/NIRS imaging was only possible in C-and D-cup-sized breasts, the study illustrates the design and clinical testing of an MRI breast coil for combined MRI/NIRS on subjects of all bra cup sizes and mammographic density categories. Biomedical engineers from the Dartmouth’s Thayer School of Engineering have designed a set of eight light-transmitting cables that can be adjusted to surround the breast with light tension. The procedure is nearly identical to clinical MRI. Another advance is that this system gives researchers the ability to target lesions in hard-to-reach areas close to the chest wall. “With the successful completion of this study, simultaneous MRI/NIRS is possible in all breast sizes, tissue compositions and lesion locations,” Mastanduno says...

...The study is detailed in the article “Adaptable Near-Infrared Spectroscopy Fiber Array for Improved Coupling to Different Breast Sizes During Clinical MRI,” published in Academic Radiology.

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