Imaging the Human Prostate Gland Using 1-μm-Resolution Optical Coherence Tomography

Arch Pathol Lab Med. 2019 Mar;143(3):314-318. doi: 10.5858/arpa.2018-0135-OA. Epub 2018 Dec 14.


Context.—: The accuracy of needle biopsy for the detection of prostate cancer is limited by well-known sampling errors. Thus, there is an unmet need for a microscopic screening tool that can screen large regions of the prostate comprehensively for cancer. Previous prostate imaging by optical coherence tomography (OCT) has had insufficient resolution for imaging cellular features related to prostate cancer. We have recently developed micro-optical coherence tomography (μOCT) that generates depth-resolved tissue images at a high frame rate with an isotropic resolution of 1 μm.

Objective.—: To demonstrate that optical images obtained with μOCT provide cellular-level contrast in prostate specimens that will enable differentiation and diagnosis of prostate pathologies.

Design.—: Fresh prostate specimens obtained from surgical resections were scanned with μOCT ex vivo. Histologic features in the μOCT images were correlated to the corresponding conventional histology.

Results.—: Findings indicate that μOCT is capable of resolving many of the architectural and cellular features associated with benign and neoplastic prostate.

Conclusions.—: Because μOCT can be implemented in a small-diameter flexible probe, this study suggests that high-resolution μOCT imaging may be a useful tool for needle-based virtual biopsy of the prostate gland.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Diagnostic Imaging / methods*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Prostate / diagnostic imaging*
  • Tomography, Optical Coherence / methods*