Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Wavelet denoising and reconstruction of a microneedle embedded in human skin ex-vivo using terahertz pulsed reflectance

Mueller-Holtz, Martin ; Smith, Geoff

Abstract


Biological tissue can show promising features in the terahertz region of the electro-magnetic spectrum but face the problem that the signal to noise ratio can be poor due to the low energy output from the measurement instrument coupled with the high absorbance of water in biological tissue. Wavelet denoising and reconstruction are known to be suitable digital signal processing filters for reflected terahertz energy when appropriate thresholds, scales and mother-wavelets are chosen. In this article, we therefore describe a Wavelet transform-based method for denoising reflections of THz energy from ex-vivo human skin with an embedded microneedle. The wavelet reconstruction was then successfully used to identify the microneedle from the reflected waveform. This technique is potentially useful to enhance in-depth analysis and visualisation of underlying skin layers, lesions and penetration depth for targeted drug delivery.