1. Blood flow contrast enhancement in optical coherence tomography using microbubbles: a phantom study

    Blood flow contrast enhancement in optical coherence tomography using microbubbles: a phantom study

    In this study gas microbubbles are investigated as intravascular OCT contrast agents. Agar+Intralipid scattering tissue-like phantoms with two embedded microtubes were fabricated to model vascular blood flow. One was filled with human blood, and the other with a mixture of human blood and microbubbles. Swept-source structural and speckle variance OCT images, as well as speckle decorrelation times, were evaluated under both stationary and flow conditions. Faster decorrelation times and higher image contrast were detected in the presence of microbubbles in all experiments, and the effect was largest for speckle variance OCT ~2.3x greater contrast under flow conditions. The ...

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