J. Biomed. Opt.

Evaluating clinical near-infrared surgical camera systems with a view to optimizing operator and computational signal analysis

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Significance: As clinical evidence on the colorectal application of indocyanine green (ICG) perfusion angiography accrues, there is also interest in computerizing decision support. However, user interpretation and software development may be impacted by system factors affecting the displayed near-infrared (NIR) signal. Aim: We aim to assess the impact of camera positioning on the displayed NIR signal across different open and laparoscopic camera systems. Approach: The effects of distance, movement, and target location (center versus periphery) on the displayed fluorescence signal of different systems were measured under electromagnetic stereotactic guidance from an ICG-albumin model and in vivo during surgery. Results: Systems displayed distinct fluorescence performances with variance apparent with scope optical lens configuration (0 deg versus 30 deg), movement, target positioning, and distance. Laparoscopic system readings fitted inverse square function distance-intensity curves with one device and demonstrated a direction dependent sigmoid curve. Laparoscopic cameras presented central targets as brighter than peripheral ones, and laparoscopes with angled optical lens configurations had a diminished field of view. One handheld open system also showed a distance-intensity relationship, whereas the other maintained a consistent signal despite distance, but both presented peripheral targets brighter than central ones. Conclusions: Optimal clinical use and signal computational development requires detailed appreciation of system behaviors.