Development of multispectral imaging and measurement of oxygenation in skin blood flow

UoM administered thesis: Master of Philosophy

  • Authors:
  • Ian Poxon


A method for using multispectral imaging (MSI) to determine relative changes in oxygenation, erythema, total haemoglobin and melanin concentrations in skin is presented. Our aim was to develop a non-invasive technique for measuring skin tissue properties which could with used with patients with systemic sclerosis (SSc) and Raynaud’s phenomenon. The method was tested in a healthy control study with 10 participants who underwent a 2 minute arterial occlusion of the middle finger while images were taken with a hyperspectral imaging system. The technique was sufficiently sensitive to measure changes in skin properties, such as erythema and oxygenation, in response to the digital occlusion. It was found that the oxygenation dependent index was decreased during occlusion and elevated post-occlusion. Erythema was also found to be increased post-occlusion. A feasibility study was then conducted where the response to 2 minute arterial occlusion of the middle finger was compared between patient and healthy control groups. In this study, 10 healthy controls, 10 patients with limited cutaneous SSc (lcSSc) and 7 with diffuse cutaneous SSc (dcSSc) participated. Multispectral images were taken of the hand at before, during and after the arterial occlusion. All groups displayed lower levels of oxygenation during occlusion which increased to a level above baseline upon release. We found a blunted and delayed response in SSc patient groups compared to healthy controls which may be due to the microvascular changes which occur with SSc.


Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
Award date1 Aug 2018