Spectral Differences Between Normal and Atherosclerotic Aorta
Ischemic heart disease associated with coronary artery atherosclerosis is a leading cause of
death in the world today. In addition to standard treatments such as balloon angioplasty, laser mediated angioplasty is being considered as a potential adjuvant or replacement. Nevertheless, experiments and clinical experience have demonstrated that laser angioplasty is associated with damage to normal vessel tissue, which can cause serious complications. To study the possibility of minimizing these effects by directing laser energy more specifically to atherosclerotic lesions, data concerning the spectral characteristics of normal and diseased artery are necessary. In the current study, the absorbance, reflection and fluorescence spectra of normal and atherosclerotic aortic wall tissue are defined, revealing that (i) spectral characteristics of atherosclerotic aorta wall samples are significantly differed from that of healthy vascular wall samples and (ii) based on a spectral analysis of vascular wall, it is possible to distinguish morphological types of atherosclerotic plaques (i.e., lipidic, calcified). The current study contributes to a more complete understanding of laser-tissue interactions that may, following more experimentation and technique development, result in an improvement of clinical laser angioplasty technique.
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