A Consensus Modeling Approach for the Determination of Stratum Corneum Thickness Using In-Vivo Confocal Raman Spectroscopy

DOI: 10.4236/jcdsa.2012.24046   PDF   HTML     3,464 Downloads   5,528 Views   Citations


The measurement of stratum corneum (SC) thickness from in-vivo Raman water concentration depth profiles is gaining in popularity and appeal due to the availability and ease of use of in-vivo confocal Raman measurement systems. The foundation of these measurements relies on high-quality confocal Raman spectroscopy of skin and the robust numerical analysis of water profiles, which allow for accurate determination of SC thickness. These measurements are useful for studying intrinsic skin hydration profiles at different body sites and for determining hydration properties of skin related to topically applied materials. While the use of high-quality in-vivo Raman instrumentation has become routine and its use for SC thickness measurement widely reported, there is lack of agreement as to the best method of computing SC thickness values from Raman water profiles. Several methods have been proposed and are currently in use for such computations, but none of these methods has been critically evaluated. The work reported in this paper describes a new method for the determination of stratum corneum thickness from in-vivo confocal Raman water profiles. The method represents a consensus approach to the problem, which was found necessary to apply in order to properly model and quantify the large diversity of water profile types encountered in typical in-vivo Raman water measurement. The methodology is evaluated for performance using three criteria: 1) frequency of minimum fitting error on modeling to a standard numerical function; 2) frequency of minimum model error for consensus vs. individual SC thickness values; and 3) correlation with reflectance confocal microscopy (RCM) values for SC thickness. The correlation study shows this approach to be a reasonable replacement for the more tedious and time-consuming RCM method with R2 = 0.68 and RMS error = 3.7 microns over the three body sites tested (cheek, forearm and leg).

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T. Hancewicz, C. Xiao, J. Weissman, V. Foy, S. Zhang and M. Misra, "A Consensus Modeling Approach for the Determination of Stratum Corneum Thickness Using In-Vivo Confocal Raman Spectroscopy," Journal of Cosmetics, Dermatological Sciences and Applications, Vol. 2 No. 4, 2012, pp. 241-251. doi: 10.4236/jcdsa.2012.24046.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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