Optoacoustic tomography combines advantages of pronounced optical contrast between different tissues and high resolution of ultrawide-band ultrasound imaging. Laser pulses may be effectively used to produce acoustic sources in tissue with enhanced optical absorption. Ultrasonic waves can propagate in biological tissue with minimal distortion and deliver diagnostic information to the surface of tissue, where they may be detected with temporal resolution by piezoelectric transducers. Current status of the optoacoustic tomography applied in early detection of cancerous lesions in the breast (utilizing forward mode) and in oral cavity (utilizing backward mode) is reviewed.
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