Noninvasive diffuse optical monitoring of head and neck tumor blood flow and oxygenation during radiation delivery

Lixin Dong, Mahesh Kudrimoti, Ran Cheng, Yu Shang, Ellis L. Johnson, Scott D. Stevens, Brent J. Shelton, Guoqiang Yu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study explored using a novel diffuse correlation spectroscopy (DCS) flow-oximeter to noninvasively monitor blood flow and oxygenation changes in head and neck tumors during radiation delivery. A fiber-optic probe connected to the DCS flow-oximeter was placed on the surface of the radiologically/clinically involved cervical lymph node. The DCS flow-oximeter in the treatment room was remotely operated by a computer in the control room. From the early measurements, abnormal signals were observed when the optical device was placed in close proximity to the radiation beams. Through phantom tests, the artifacts were shown to be caused by scattered x rays and consequentially avoided by moving the optical device away from the x-ray beams. Eleven patients with head and neck tumors were continually measured once a week over a treatment period of seven weeks, although there were some missing data due to the patient related events. Large inter-patient variations in tumor hemodynamic responses were observed during radiation delivery. A significant increase in tumor blood flow was observed at the first week of treatment, which may be a physiologic response to hypoxia created by radiation oxygen consumption. Only small and insignificant changes were found in tumor blood oxygenation, suggesting that oxygen utilizations in tumors during the short period of fractional radiation deliveries were either minimal or balanced by other effects such as blood flow regulation. Further investigations in a large patient population are needed to correlate the individual hemodynamic responses with the clinical outcomes for determining the prognostic value of optical measurements.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)259-272
Number of pages14
JournalBiomedical Optics Express
Volume3
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics

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