Polarization-sensitive optical coherence tomography (PS-OCT) is a functional OCT providing both structural and birefringent information of the sample, and it has been applied to the studies of various organs having polarization properties. Fiber-based PS-OCT is sensitive to specular reflection from the sample surface, because signal saturation due to the strong specular reflection can make the polarization measurement difficult. We developed a dark-field PS-OCT which can avoid the specular reflection problem. Dark-field PS-OCT was implemented by adapting a hybrid method of Bessel-beam illumination and Gaussian-beam detection, and a PS-OCT method based on passive delay unit (PDU). The new system was characterized in comparison with the conventional Gaussian-beam based method in both polarization components and various samples including the human skin. Dark-field PS-OCT performed as good as the conventional PSOCT without the specular reflection artifact. Dark-field PS-OCT may be useful in practical situations where the specular reflection is unavoidable.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics