Confocal microlaparoscope for imaging the fallopian tube

Tzu Yu Wu, Rachel Schafer, Andrew R. Rouse, Arthur F. Gmitro

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Scopus citations


Recent evidence suggests that epithelial ovarian cancer may originate in the fimbriated end of the fallopian tube1. Unlike many other cancers, poor access to the ovary and fallopian tubes has limited the ability to study the progression of this deadly disease and to diagnosis it during the early stage when it is most amenable to therapy. We have previously reported on a rigid confocal microlaparoscope system that is currently undergoing a clinical trial to image the epithelial surface of the ovary2. In order to gain in vivo access to the fallopian tubes we have developed a new confocal microlaparoscope with an articulating distal tip. The new instrument builds upon the technology developed for the existing confocal microlaparoscope. It has an ergonomic handle fabricated by a rapid prototyping printer. While maintaining compatibility with a 5 mm trocar, the articulating distal tip of the instrument consists of a 2.2 mm diameter bare fiber bundle catheter with automated dye delivery for fluorescence imaging. This small and flexible catheter design should enable the confocal microlaparoscope to image early stage ovarian cancer arising inside the fallopian tube. Early ex vivo mages of human fallopian tube and in vivo imaging results from recent open surgeries using the rigid confocal microlaparoscope system are presented. Ex vivo images from animal models using the new articulating bare fiber system are also presented. These high quality images collected by the new flexible system are similar in quality to those obtained from the epithelial surface of ovaries with the rigid clinical confocal microlaparoscope.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEndoscopic Microscopy VII
StatePublished - 2012
EventEndoscopic Microscopy VII - San Francisco, CA, United States
Duration: Jan 22 2012Jan 23 2012

Publication series

NameProgress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging - Proceedings of SPIE
ISSN (Print)1605-7422


OtherEndoscopic Microscopy VII
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Francisco, CA


  • Confocal
  • Fallopian tube
  • Fiber bundle
  • Microlaparoscope
  • Ovarian cancer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Biomaterials


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