The Facts On Photoacoustic Technology May Prove Its Need For The Future

Alexander Graham Bell was trying to find a way to communicate wirelessly when he stumbled upon the facts on photoacoustic technology. While it seems to be an extremely difficult concept to understand, it is actually not that tricky. The basic idea is that an object that is subjected to a constantly flickering light beam emits a sound.

Although, the discovery was remarkable, there had not been any way to transmit those sound waves. Therefore, the idea laid dormant for many years. Finally, almost a century later, what is known as Bell’s photoacoustic effect is finding its way back to the forefront of biomedical imaging.

Researchers are combining optics with ultrasonic imaging. This process is being called photoacoustic tomography and is thought to be able to provide detailed pictures. Many researchers are comparing the images to those found using MRIs and CT scans. These scans are used in diagnosing and treating many of the nation’s most deadly diseases.

The main difference with this new technology is that it is much cheaper to use that the standard scans. Because the scans are able to view deeper than many other options, it is hoped that with more development it will be able to aid biopsy needles to go deeper into the tissues. Optimism is strong that it will also be able to assist with gastrointestinal endoscopy and check oxygen levels in the lymph nodes in order to help determine if a tumor is benign or not.

Photoacoustic technology is designed to use fast paced pulses from a laser onto the tissues to gain a picture. The tissue will increase in temperature slightly when the laser hits it. This causes the skin cells to react by expanding and contracting, which in turn makes a sound. Sound waves are read using computerized equipment, and then form a three dimensional picture of what lies below the skin’s surface.

Probably one of the most encouraging uses for this method is treating cancer patients. Blood cells are excellent at absorbing light and make them a perfect candidate at being able to give a high-contrast image of the vessels. It can also detect a heightened metabolic activity. These are both signs of cancer.

There are also studies being conducted to find a way to combine ultrasound images with photoacoustic technologies. Researcher believe if these two sets of images are combined it will offer the clearest possible picture of what is going on inside the body. The developments of this theory are currently being used with breast cancer patients who have already been diagnosed.

Even though, there seems to be some serious strides that have been taken in this new technology, there are still some problems that have not yet been resolved. It has been determined that the deeper the laser goes into the tissues it becomes difficult to read due to the scattering of the vibration. This creates some limitations on how deeply it can be used. Despite these roadblocks, the facts on photoacoustic technology are encouraging. Many believe it will be the best method for patients in the Contrast Imaging.

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