The theoretical basis for the determination of optical pathlengths in tissue: temporal and frequency analysis

Phys Med Biol. 1992 Jul;37(7):1531-60. doi: 10.1088/0031-9155/37/7/005.


A concise theoretical treatment is developed for the calculation of mean time, differential pathlength, phase shift, modulation depth and integrated intensity of measurements of light intensity as a function of time on the surface of tissue, resulting from either the input of picosecond light pulses, or radio frequency-modulated light. The treatment uses the Green's function of the diffusion approximation to the radiative transfer equation, and develops this and its Fourier transform in a variety of geometries. Detailed comparisons are made of several of these parameters in several geometries, and their relation to experimentally measured clinical data. The limitations of the use of phase measurements is discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Diagnostic Imaging*
  • Diffusion
  • Infrared Rays
  • Lasers
  • Light*
  • Mathematics
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Scattering, Radiation