Thesis Defense for Christopher Fong

Sponsor: Prof. Andreas Hielscher
Date & Time: Friday, May 12, 2017 @ 1pm
Location: Taub A (P&S Building 12-460 A, 168th st CUMC)
Title:  Development of Portable Diffuse Optical Spectroscopic Systems for Treatment Monitoring

Abstract: The goal of this dissertation is to demonstrate the utility of portable, small-scale diffuse optical spectroscopic (DOS) systems for the diagnosis and treatment monitoring of various diseases. These systems employ near-infrared light (wavelength range of 650nm to 950nm) to probe human tissue and are sensitive to changes in scattering and absorption properties of tissues. The absorption is mainly influenced by the components of blood, namely oxy- and deoxy-hemoglobin (HbO2 and Hb) and parameters that can be derived from them (e.g. total hemoglobin concentration [THb] and oxygen saturation, StO2). Therefore, I focused on diseases in which these parameters change, which includes vascular diseases such as Peripheral Atrial Disease (PAD) and Infantile Hemangiomas (IH) as well as musculoskeletal autoimmune diseases such as Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA). In each of these specific diseases, current monitoring techniques are limited by their sensitivity to disease progression or simply do not exist as a quantitative metric.

As part of this project, I first designed and built a wireless handheld DOS device (WHDD) that can perform DOS measurements at various tissue depths. This device was used in a 15-patient pilot study for infantile hemangiomas (IH) to differentiate diseased skin from normal skin and monitor the vascular changes during intervention. In another study, I compare the ultra-small form-factor WHDD’s ability to monitor synovitis and disease progression during a patient’s treatment of RA against the capabilities of a proven frequency domain optical tomographic (FDOT) system that has shown to differentiate patients with and without RA. Learning from clinical utility of the WHDD from these two studies, I adapted the WHDD technology to develop a compact multi-channel DOS measurement system to monitor perfusion changes in the lower extremities before and after surgical intervention for patients with peripheral artery disease (PAD). Using this multi-channel system, which we called the vascular optical spectroscopic measurement (VOSM) system, our group conducted a 20-subject pilot study to quantify its ability to monitor blood perfusion before and after revascularization of stenotic arteries in the lower extremities. This proof-of-concept study demonstrated how DOS may help vascular surgeons perform revascularization procedures in the operating room and assists in post-operative treatment monitoring of vascular diseases.

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