Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) is a sensitive imaging technique that generates cross-sectional images of turbid tissues with a micrometer-scale resolution. Polarization-Sensitive (PS) OCT adds additional contrast to OCT by detecting polarization alterations within tissues, and provides accurate OCT images in polarization-altering tissues. Common approaches to build PSOCT are either: simple but difficult to incorporate in clinics and laboratories, or fiber-based and flexible but expensive, sophisticated, and computationally demanding.
We have developed a new approach to build PSOCT using Polarization-Maintaining Fibers (PMF). A single depth scan is sufficient to calculate reflectivity, retardance, and axis orientation information using computationally-inexpensive algorithms. We present novel PMF-based PSOCT systems and demonstrate sensitivity figures larger than 100 dB, equivalent to common approaches. The developed PMF-based interferometers are used to measure minute Faraday rotations in tissue-mimicking phantoms, and the polarization properties of unmyelinated nerves. A novel algorithm is also developed to correct for errors calculating the birefringence of samples, and generate interpretable PSOCT images.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. December 2010. Major: Biomedical Engineering. Advisor: Taner Akkin. 1 computer file (PDF); xxii, 171 pages, appendices A-D. Ill. (some col.)
Al-Qaisi, Muhammad K..
Polarization-sensitive optical coherence tomography using polarization-maintaining fibers.
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