An anatomical neck model was constructed for the feasibility study of diffuse optical imaging of malignant lesions in the thyroid gland. The anatomical structure of the model is based on the magnetic resonance images of the human neck. The optical properties of the muscle and background tissue in the model are determined by time-resolved measurements. The light propagation in the thyroid gland is strongly affected by the presence of the trachea, which is an optically-void region.
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