Texture analysis of optical coherence tomography images: Feasibility for tissue classification

Kirk W. Gossage, Tomasz S. Tkaczyk, Jeffrey J. Rodriguez, Jennifer K. Barton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

164 Scopus citations


Optical coherence tomography (OCT) acquires cross-sectional images of tissue by measuring back-reflected light. Images from in vivo OCT systems typically have a resolution of 10 to 15 mm, and are thus best suited for visualizing structures in the range of tens to hundreds of microns, such as tissue layers or glands. Many normal and abnormal tissues lack visible structures in this size range, so it may appear that OCT is unsuitable for identification of these tissues. However, examination of structure-poor OCT images reveals that they frequently display a characteristic texture that is due to speckle. We evaluated the application of statistical and spectral texture analysis techniques for differentiating tissue types based on the structural and speckle content in OCT images. Excellent correct classification rates were obtained when images had slight visual differences (mouse skin and fat, correct classification rates of 98.5 and 97.3%, respectively), and reasonable rates were obtained with nearly identical-appearing images (normal versus abnormal mouse lung, correct classification rates of 64.0 and 88.6%, respectively). This study shows that texture analysis of OCT images may be capable of differentiating tissue types Without reliance On Visible Structures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)570-575
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of biomedical optics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2003


  • Brodatz
  • Image processing
  • Lung
  • Speckle

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Biomaterials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Biomedical Engineering


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