Application of Infrared Fluorescence Technology in Lymphatic System Detection

A new study of breast cancer patients may help doctors reduce the side effects of treatment options. A study conducted by Dr. Eva Sevick, Director of the Molecular Imaging Center at the University of Texas Medical School (UTHSC), in collaboration with Dr. Caraline Eife, Director of the UTHSC Hermann Honor Trauma Care Center, can alleviate suffering for millions of patients.

Their paper was published in the Biomedical Optics Express, an inaugural issue of an online, open journal published by the Optical Society of America (OSA). The article in the magazine will focus on the combination of theoretical models and simulation, technology development, biomedical research and clinical applications.

It is understood that a considerable number of breast cancer patients have complications of lymphedema after surgery. Due to lymphedema, the fluid accumulates in the upper limbs, which may cause limb deformation or limb edema of the prisoner, which greatly affects the quality of life of the patient.

Although the treatments for this phenomenon vary, in general, both manual and aerated therapies are used to "push" or stimulate the body to expel excess fluid to reduce tissue edema. It usually takes several months to test whether a therapy is effective. The main reason for this phenomenon is that the existing method of evaluation of the effect is to determine the degree of edema change by measuring the circumference or volume of the limb - and this change is large enough to be measured and often takes a considerable amount of time.

During this time, the situation may improve – and it may worsen further.

The UTHSC research team has developed a promising and more rapid measure of efficacy. They used the latest near-infrared fluorescence imaging technology to monitor the roots of lymphedema: due to blockage or damage to the lymphatic system, lymph fluid does not normally circulate through the body and accumulates in the limbs.

"The lymphatic system is like a drain in your body," Sevick said. "If they are blocked, it will happen sooner or later."

Nine female subjects, including 6 lymphedema patients and 3 controls, received injections of near-infrared fluorescent imaging dyes, which have been safely used for 50 years at higher doses. This dye is taken up by the lymphatic system. When the surface of the tissue is exposed to a weak, weak, near-infrared laser that is almost harmless to the human body, the fluorescent dye contains its trajectory in the lymphatic system without any reservation.

“This is the only way to directly determine whether lymphatic function has improved before and after treatment,” Sevick said.

Clinicians often have several treatments that control lymphedema. They may use a compression bandage or massage the limbs to artificially promote the discharge of fluids from the limbs. Similar treatment may be provided at home by inflation or compression of the inflation press or sleeves made from a plurality of compartments. But they are not all covered in the scope of medical insurance because of the lack of relevant clinical evidence.

“The biggest problem is that there has never been a good way to evaluate the treatment,” Sevick said. “But the good news is that we can use near-infrared fluorescence imaging to improve the function of the lymphatic system brought about by these treatments. show out."

After treatment with a pneumatic compression device, a statistically significant improvement in the lymphatic system has been immediately detected by near-infrared fluorescence techniques. However, Sevick said that a larger follow-up study is still needed to confirm the results of this prospective trial.

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