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19.05.2017 | Original Article | Ausgabe 5/2017

Lasers in Medical Science 5/2017

Finite element method simulating temperature distribution in skin induced by 980-nm pulsed laser based on pain stimulation

Lasers in Medical Science > Ausgabe 5/2017
Han Wang, Xiao-Xi Dong, Ji-Chun Yang, He Huang, Ying-Xin Li, Hai-Xia Zhang


For predicting the temperature distribution within skin tissue in 980-nm laser-evoked potentials (LEPs) experiments, a five-layer finite element model (FEM-5) was constructed based on Pennes bio-heat conduction equation and the Lambert-Beer law. The prediction results of the FEM-5 model were verified by ex vivo pig skin and in vivo rat experiments. Thirty ex vivo pig skin samples were used to verify the temperature distribution predicted by the model. The output energy of the laser was 1.8, 3, and 4.4 J. The laser spot radius was 1 mm. The experiment time was 30 s. The laser stimulated the surface of the ex vivo pig skin beginning at 10 s and lasted for 40 ms. A thermocouple thermometer was used to measure the temperature of the surface and internal layers of the ex vivo pig skin, and the sampling frequency was set to 60 Hz. For the in vivo experiments, nine adult male Wistar rats weighing 180 ± 10 g were used to verify the prediction results of the model by tail-flick latency. The output energy of the laser was 1.4 and 2.08 J. The pulsed width was 40 ms. The laser spot radius was 1 mm. The Pearson product-moment correlation and Kruskal-Wallis test were used to analyze the correlation and the difference of data. The results of all experiments showed that the measured and predicted data had no significant difference (P > 0.05) and good correlation (r > 0.9). The safe laser output energy range (1.8–3 J) was also predicted. Using the FEM-5 model prediction, the effective pain depth could be accurately controlled, and the nociceptors could be selectively activated. The FEM-5 model can be extended to guide experimental research and clinical applications for humans.

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