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Sensors 2016, 16(12), 2111;

Evaluation of Laser-Assisted Trans-Nail Drug Delivery with Optical Coherence Tomography

Department of Electrical Engineering, Chang Gung University, Taoyuan 33302, Taiwan
Medical Imaging Research Center, Institute for Radiological Research, Chang Gung University and Chang Gung Memorial Hospital at Linkou, Taoyuan 33302, Taiwan
Department of Dermatology, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Linkou 33305, Taiwan
Department of Ophthalmology, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Linkou 33305, Taiwan
College of Medicine, Chang Gung University, Taoyuan 33302, Taiwan
Institute of Electro-Optical Science and Technology, National Taiwan Normal University, Taipei 11677, Taiwan
Department of Neurosurgery, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, LinKou 33305, Taiwan
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Dragan Indjin
Received: 19 October 2016 / Revised: 5 December 2016 / Accepted: 7 December 2016 / Published: 12 December 2016
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The nail provides a functional protection to the fingertips and surrounding tissue from external injuries. The nail plate consists of three layers including dorsal, intermediate, and ventral layers. The dorsal layer consists of compact, hard keratins, limiting topical drug delivery through the nail. In this study, we investigate the application of fractional CO2 laser that produces arrays of microthermal ablation zones (MAZs) to facilitate drug delivery in the nails. We utilized optical coherence tomography (OCT) for real-time monitoring of the laser–skin tissue interaction, sparing the patient from an invasive surgical sampling procedure. The time-dependent OCT intensity variance was used to observe drug diffusion through an induced MAZ array. Subsequently, nails were treated with cream and liquid topical drugs to investigate the feasibility and diffusion efficacy of laser-assisted drug delivery. Our results show that fractional CO2 laser improves the effectiveness of topical drug delivery in the nail plate and that OCT could potentially be used for in vivo monitoring of the depth of laser penetration as well as real-time observations of drug delivery. View Full-Text
Keywords: drug delivery; nail; optical coherence tomography; fractional laser; laser ablation drug delivery; nail; optical coherence tomography; fractional laser; laser ablation

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Tsai, M.-T.; Tsai, T.-Y.; Shen, S.-C.; Ng, C.Y.; Lee, Y.-J.; Lee, J.-D.; Yang, C.-H. Evaluation of Laser-Assisted Trans-Nail Drug Delivery with Optical Coherence Tomography. Sensors 2016, 16, 2111.

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