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Impact of hemoglobin breakdown products in the spectral analysis of burn wounds using spatial frequency domain spectroscopy


Burn wounds and wound healing invoke several biological processes that may complicate the interpretation of spectral imaging data. Through analysis of spatial frequency domain spectroscopy data (450 to 1000 nm) obtained from longitudinal investigations using a graded porcine burn wound healing model, we have identified features in the absorption spectrum that appear to suggest the presence of hemoglobin breakdown products, e.g., methemoglobin. Our results show that the calculated concentrations of methemoglobin directly correlate with burn severity, 24 h after the injury. In addition, tissue parameters such as oxygenation (StO2) and water fraction may be underestimated by 20% and 78%, respectively, if methemoglobin is not included in the spectral analysis.

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