Successful treatment of breast cancer typically requires surgical removal of the tumor. Optical coherence tomography (OCT) has been previously developed for real-time imaging of the surgical margin. However, it can be difficult to distinguish between normal stromal tissue and cancer tissue based on scattering intensity and structure alone. Polarization-sensitive optical coherence tomography (PS-OCT) is sensitive to form birefringence of biological tissue. We report on the development of a high-speed PS-OCT system and imaging of ex vivohuman breast tissue, showing enhanced contrast between healthy and cancerous tissues based upon collagen content confirmed with corresponding histology. These results demonstrate the feasibility of using PS-OCT to supplement structural OCT as a possible method for intraoperative tumor margin evaluation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3417-3426
Number of pages10
JournalBiomedical Optics Express
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


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