To improve the safety and efficacy of thermal therapy, it is necessary to map tissue temperature in real time with submillimetre spatial resolution. Accurate temperature maps may provide the necessary control of the boundaries of the heated regions and minimize thermal damage to surrounding normal tissues. Current imaging modalities fail to monitor tissue temperature in real time with high resolution and accuracy. We investigated a non-invasive optoacoustic method for accurate, real-time monitoring of tissue temperature during thermotherapy. In this study, we induced temperature gradients in tissue and tissue-like samples and monitored the temperature distribution using the optoacoustic technique. The fundamental harmonic of a Q-switched Nd : YAG laser (λ ≤ 1064 nm) was used for optoacoustic wave generation and probing of tissue temperature. The tissue temperature was also monitored with a multi-sensor temperature probe inserted in the samples. Good agreement between optoacoustically measured and actual tissue temperatures was obtained. The accuracy of temperature monitoring was better than 1°C, while the spatial resolution was about 1 mm. These data suggest that the optoacoustic technique has the potential to be used for non-invasive, real-time temperature monitoring during thermotherapy.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)