We present a method for acquiring whole-head images of changes in blood volume and oxygenation from the infant brain at cot-side using time-resolved diffuse optical tomography (TR-DOT). At UCL, we have built a portable TR-DOT device, known as MONSTIR II, which is capable of obtaining a whole-head (1024 channels) image sequence in 75 seconds. Datatypes extracted from the temporal point spread functions acquired by the system allow us to determine changes in absorption and reduced scattering coefficients within the interrogated tissue. This information can then be used to define clinically relevant measures, such as oxygen saturation, as well as to reconstruct images of relative changes in tissue chromophore concentration, notably those of oxy- and deoxyhaemoglobin. Additionally, the effective temporal resolution of our system is improved with spatio-temporal regularisation implemented through a Kalman filtering approach, allowing us to image transient haemodynamic changes. By using this filtering technique with intensity and mean time-of-flight datatypes, we have reconstructed images of changes in absorption and reduced scattering coefficients in a dynamic 2D phantom. These results demonstrate that MONSTIR II is capable of resolving slow changes in tissue optical properties within volumes that are comparable to the preterm head. Following this verification study, we are progressing to imaging a 3D dynamic phantom as well as the neonatal brain at cot-side. Our current study involves scanning healthy babies to demonstrate the quality of recordings we are able to achieve in this challenging patient population, with the eventual goal of imaging functional activation and seizures.
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