Journal Article Investigation of Thermal Effects of Photocoagulation on Retinal Tissue Using Fine-Motion-Sensitive Dynamic Optical Coherence Tomography

Kurokawa, Kazuhiro  ,  Makita, Shuichi  ,  Yasuno, Yoshiaki

11 ( 6 )  , p.e0156761 , 2016-06 , Public Library of Science
To enable an objective evaluation of photocoagulation, we characterize thermal tissue changes induced by laser irradiation with different laser parameters using optical coherence tomography (OCT). Spectral-domain OCT with a newly developed image processing method was used to monitor the thermal changes of ex vivo porcine retina. A sequence of OCT B-scans was obtained at the same retinal position simultaneously with the photocoagulation. Cross-sectional tissue displacement maps with respect to an OCT image taken before laser irradiation were computed for images taken before, during, and after laser irradiation, by using a correlation-based custom algorithm. Cross-sectional correlation maps (OCT correlation maps) were also computed from an OCT image taken before laser irradiation as a base-line to visualize alterations of tissue microstructure induced by laser irradiation. By systematically controlling laser power and exposure times, tissue displacements and structural changes of 200 retinal regions of 10 porcine eyes were characterized. Thermal tissue changes were characterized by B-scan images, OCT correlation maps, and tissue displacement maps. Larger tissue deformation was induced with higher laser power and shorter exposure time, while the same total laser energy (10 mJ) was applied. The measured tissue displacements revealed the complicated dynamics of tissue displacements. Three types of dynamics were observed; lateral expansion, lateral constriction, and a type showing more complicated dynamics. The results demonstrated the ability of this OCT-based method to evaluate retinal changes induced by laser irradiation. This evaluation could lead to further understanding of thermal effects, and increasing reproducibility of photocoagulation therapy.

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