Background: Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is a non-invasive optical imaging technique with a micrometer resolution that may potentially offer real-time bedside imaging of sufficient detail to allow for morphological discrimination between different types of bullae. Objective: To explore the potential of OCT in bullous skin disorders by looking at a set of patients with skin blisters of known origin and study the OCT images for possible hallmarks of the blistering level. Materials and methods: OCT provides cross-sectional, tomographic images of the skin. A consecutive series of patients were recruited and their lesions imaged by OCT: 3 patients with bullous pemphigoid (BP), 1 patient with extensive bullae following burns, 1 patient with pemphigus, 1 patient with subcorneal pustular dermatosis, and a patient with Dariers disease. The latter two were included due to similarity to pemphigus with respect to the level of defect cell adhesion. Results: In OCT images, BP bullae are easily depicted as dark, ovoid to round well-demarquated areas, and BP bulla morphology is clearly different from the burn blisters and the pemphigus-like disease with respect to the blistering level. Discussion: Differentiation of epidermal and subepidermal blisters is demonstrated using OCT. The variation within pemphigoid lesions and pemphigus-like diseases is however too subtle to allow for differential diagnosis; this may be ascribed to limited resolution. Enhanced resolution of OCT may overcome this obstacle.
|Tidsskrift||Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology|
|Status||Udgivet - 1 dec. 2008|