We developed an ultrahigh speed, handheld swept source optical coherence tomography (SS-OCT) ophthalmic instrument using a 2D MEMS mirror. A vertical cavity surface-emitting laser (VCSEL) operating at 1060 nm center wavelength yielded a 350 kHz axial scan rate and 10 µm axial resolution in tissue. The long coherence length of the VCSEL enabled a 3.08 mm imaging range with minimal sensitivity roll-off in tissue. Two different designs with identical optical components were tested to evaluate handheld OCT ergonomics. An iris camera aided in alignment of the OCT beam through the pupil and a manual fixation light selected the imaging region on the retina. Volumetric and high definition scans were obtained from 5 undilated normal subjects. Volumetric OCT data was acquired by scanning the 2.4 mm diameter 2D MEMS mirror sinusoidally in the fast direction and linearly in the orthogonal slow direction. A second volumetric sinusoidal scan was obtained in the orthogonal direction and the two volumes were processed with a software algorithm to generate a merged motion-corrected volume. Motion-corrected standard 6 x 6 mm(2) and wide field 10 x 10 mm(2) volumetric OCT data were generated using two volumetric scans, each obtained in 1.4 seconds. High definition 10 mm and 6 mm B-scans were obtained by averaging and registering 25 B-scans obtained over the same position in 0.57 seconds. One of the advantages of volumetric OCT data is the generation of en face OCT images with arbitrary cross sectional B-scans registered to fundus features. This technology should enable screening applications to identify early retinal disease, before irreversible vision impairment or loss occurs. Handheld OCT technology also promises to enable applications in a wide range of settings outside of the traditional ophthalmology or optometry clinics including pediatrics, intraoperative, primary care, developing countries, and military medicine.
Keywords: (170.3880) Medical and biological imaging; (170.4460) Ophthalmic optics and devices; (170.4470) Ophthalmology; (170.4500) Optical coherence tomography; (170.5755) Retina scanning.