Clinical feasibility of optical coherence micro-elastography for imaging tumor margins in breast-conserving surgery

Wes M. Allen, Ken Y. Foo, Renate Zilkens, Kelsey M. Kennedy, Qi Fang, Lixin Chin, Benjamin F. Dessauvagie, Bruce Latham, Christobel M. Saunders, Brendan F. Kennedy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Web of Science)


It has been demonstrated that optical coherence micro-elastography (OCME) provides additional contrast of tumor compared to optical coherence tomography (OCT) alone. Previous studies, however, have predominantly been performed on mastectomy specimens. Such specimens typically differ substantially in composition and geometry from the more clinically relevant wide-local excision (WLE) specimens excised during breast-conserving surgery. As a result, it remains unclear if the mechanical contrast observed is maintained in WLE specimens. In this manuscript, we begin to address this issue by performing a feasibility study of OCME on 17 freshly excised, intact WLE specimens. In addition, we present two developments required to sustain the progression of OCME towards intraoperative deployment. First, to enable the rapid visualization of en face images required for intraoperative assessment, we describe an automated segmentation algorithm to fuse en face micro-elastograms with OCT images to provide dual contrast images. Secondly, to validate contrast in micro-elastograms, we present a method that enables co-registration of en face images with histology of WLE specimens, sectioned in the orthogonal plane, without any modification to the standard clinical workflow. We present a summary of the observations across the 17 specimens imaged in addition to representative micro-elastograms and OCT images demonstrating contrast in a number of tumor margins, including those involved by invasive ductal carcinoma, mucinous carcinoma, and solid-papillary carcinoma. The results presented here demonstrate the potential of OCME for imaging tumor margins.

Original languageEnglish
Article number#342473
Pages (from-to)6331-6349
Number of pages19
JournalBiomedical Optics Express
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2018


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