Optical coherence tomography for imaging of skin and skin diseases

Mette Mogensen, Lars Thrane, Thomas Martini Jørgensen, Peter E. Andersen, G.B.E. Jemec

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is an emerging imaging technology based on light reflection. It provides real-time images with up to 2-mm penetration into the skin and a resolution of approximately 10 μm. It is routinely used in ophthalmology. The normal skin and its appendages have been studied, as have many diseases. The method can provide accurate measures of epidermal and nail changes in normal tissue. Skin cancer and other tumors, as well as inflammatory diseases, have been studied and good agreement found between OCT images and histopathological architecture. OCT also allows noninvasive monitoring of morphologic changes in skin diseases and may have a particular role in the monitoring of medical treatment of nonmelanoma skin cancer. The technology is however still evolving and continued technological development will necessitate an ongoing evaluation of its diagnostic accuracy. Several technical solutions are being pursued to further improve the quality of the images and the data provided, and OCT is being integrated in multimodal imaging devices that would potentially be able to provide a quantum leap to the imaging of skin in vivo.
Original languageEnglish
JournalSeminars in Cutaneous Medicine and Surgery
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)196-202
Publication statusPublished - 2009


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