High-resolution imaging of the human esophagus and stomach in vivo using optical coherence tomography

Gastrointest Endosc. 2000 Apr;51(4 Pt 1):467-74. doi: 10.1016/s0016-5107(00)70449-4.


Background: Optical coherence tomography is a new, high spatial-resolution, cross-sectional imaging technique. We investigated the ability of optical coherence tomography to provide detailed images of subsurface structures in the upper gastrointestinal (GI) tract.

Methods: Optical coherence tomography was performed during routine upper GI endoscopy on 32 patients including 20 patients with Barrett's esophagus. An endoscopic mucosal biopsy was obtained immediately after imaging and was used for histopathologic correlation.

Results: Optical coherence tomography provided clear delineation of layers of the normal human esophagus extending from the epithelium to the longitudinal muscularis propria. Gastric mucosa was differentiated from esophageal mucosa, Barrett's esophagus was differentiated from normal esophageal mucosa, and esophageal adenocarcinoma was distinguished from normal esophagus and Barrett's esophagus.

Conclusions: Optical coherence tomography allows visualization of the subsurface architectural morphology of the upper GI tract. The diagnostic information provided by this new imaging modality suggests that it may be a useful adjunct to endoscopy.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Controlled Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Anatomy, Cross-Sectional
  • Barrett Esophagus / diagnosis
  • Barrett Esophagus / pathology
  • Endoscopy, Digestive System / methods
  • Esophageal Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Esophageal Diseases / pathology
  • Esophagus / anatomy & histology
  • Esophagus / pathology
  • Female
  • Gastric Mucosa / anatomy & histology
  • Gastric Mucosa / pathology
  • Humans
  • Image Enhancement / methods*
  • Male
  • Mucous Membrane / anatomy & histology
  • Mucous Membrane / pathology
  • Optics and Photonics*
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Stomach Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Stomach Diseases / pathology
  • Tomography / instrumentation
  • Tomography / methods*