Laser speckle contrast imaging of cerebral blood flow in humans during neurosurgery: a pilot clinical study


Monitoring cerebral blood flow (CBF) during neurosurgery can provide important physiological information for a variety of surgical procedures. CBF measurements are important for assessing whether blood flow has returned to presurgical baseline levels and for assessing postsurgical tissue viability. Existing techniques for intraoperative monitoring of CBF based on magnetic resonance imaging are expensive and often impractical, while techniques such as indocyanine green angiography cannot produce quantitative measures of blood flow. Laser speckle contrast imaging (LSCI) is an optical technique that has been widely used to quantitatively image relative CBF in animal models in vivo. In a pilot clinical study, we adapted an existing neurosurgical operating microscope to obtain LSCI images in humans in real time during neurosurgery under baseline conditions and after bipolar cautery. Simultaneously recorded ECG waveforms from the patient were used to develop a filter that helped reduce measurement variabilities due to motion artifacts. Results from this study demonstrate the feasibility of using LSCI to obtain blood flow images during neurosurgeries and its capability to produce full field CBF image maps with excellent spatial resolution in real-time with minimal disruption to the surgical procedure.

Journal article
Journal of Biomedical Optics