Enhancement of light propagation depth in skin: cross-validation of mathematical modeling methods

Lasers Med Sci. 2009 Jul;24(4):605-15. doi: 10.1007/s10103-008-0625-4. Epub 2008 Nov 22.


Various techniques to enhance light propagation in skin have been studied in low-level laser therapy. In this study, three mathematical modeling methods for five selected techniques were implemented so that we could understand the mechanisms that enhance light propagation in skin. The five techniques included the increasing of the power and diameter of a laser beam, the application of a hyperosmotic chemical agent (HCA), and the whole and partial compression of the skin surface. The photon density profile of the five techniques was solved with three mathematical modeling methods: the finite element method (FEM), the Monte Carlo method (MCM), and the analytic solution method (ASM). We cross-validated the three mathematical modeling results by comparing photon density profiles and analyzing modeling error. The mathematical modeling results verified that the penetration depth of light can be enhanced if incident beam power and diameter, amount of HCA, or whole and partial skin compression is increased. In this study, light with wavelengths of 377 nm, 577 nm, and 633 nm was used.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Finite Element Analysis
  • Humans
  • Low-Level Light Therapy
  • Mathematical Concepts
  • Models, Biological*
  • Monte Carlo Method
  • Photobiology
  • Photochemotherapy
  • Photons
  • Skin / anatomy & histology
  • Skin / radiation effects*
  • Stochastic Processes