Semester of Graduation

Spring 2019


Master of Science in Electrical Engineering (MSEE)


Division of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Document Type



There is a global need for access to oral health care. Proper oral health care is necessary for physiological and psychological health, as well as social and economic issues. Major oral diseases that must be screened include caries, cracked teeth, and impacted molars. These diseases are screened and diagnosed using a variety of medical imaging methods, computed tomography (CT) X-ray being the most popular and efficient method. The challenges in screening with X-ray technology include financial and time cost as well as health risk, including radiation exposure induced cancer (REIC). This thesis summarizes research to explore the possibility of overcoming these challenges using indocyanine green (ICG) near infrared (NIR) fluorescent imaging. An NIR imaging system was developed to image unerupted and erupted molars on test rats injected with ICG. Rats were injected with ICG and imaged using a variety of methods. Results show that for both erupted and unerupted molars occlusal wide-field imaging could identify the molar regions, and endoscopic imaging could clearly identify molar morphology including crowns and cusps. Fluorescent intensity data was collected using a spectrometer and analyzed to determine the optimized imaging window for the NIR dental imaging system. Further experiments were conducted to test the system’s imaging capability on rat molars treated with laser ablation treatment, and on human teeth. We are the first group to develop and test a cost and time efficient, safe, and real-time NIR-Ⅰ fluorescent imaging system for in-situ dental imaging.



Committee Chair

Jian Xu