A New Laser Technology Can See Inside Our Bodies Like Never Before

A New Laser Technology Can See Inside Our Bodies Like Never Before


When you think about looking inside your own
body, you may only be able to picture images like this or this. But an emerging technique gives us pictures
that look like this…using laser-induced sound waves. Early technologies that use this technique
seem to provide us with highly detailed, super clear images of the structures inside our
bodies…with no discomfort or dangerous ionizing radiation involved. This promising technique is called photoacoustic
imaging. A basic breakdown goes like this: Different biological materials have different
chemical structures. The hemoglobin in your blood, for example,
is chemically different from the calcium in your bones, and this means that they’re
able to absorb different amounts of energy. Photoacoustic imaging takes advantage of these
differences in composition by tuning laser light to the wavelength that can be absorbed
by the tissue you want to look at. So an apparatus sends tuned pulses of laser
light to a specimen or body part and the tissue that can absorb that wavelength of light absorbs that energy…and heats up. And when the tissue heats up, it expands ever
so slightly. That expansion and then rapid cooling generates
a wave of oscillating pressure in the surrounding material: the rest of your body or the air…which
is, in the simplest possible interpretation, a sound wave—that’s the ‘acoustic’
part of the name, giving us ‘photoacoustic imaging’. Then, ultrasonic detectors capture these microscopic
changes in pressure and processing software reconstructs an image based on what those
sensors “hear”. It’s pretty different from other current
imaging technologies. CT scans and X-rays and PET scans use damaging
ionizing radiation to see inside your body, so we want to limit how many times we expose
someone to that radiation. An MRI involves an extremely strong magnetic
field, which can be a problem for anyone with any kind of metal implants, and they often
take many minutes to form an image. Even ultrasounds, which also use sound waves,
actually aren’t as clear as this newer option. Ultrasounds are more of a catch-all: you see
everything, all the tissues in a specific area, whereas with photoacoustic imaging,
you can pick and choose what you want to see just by tuning the wavelength of the laser
beam. And while this technique is only just starting
to be clinically explored as an alternative to more traditional imaging and prototype
clinical machinery is just now being developed, the idea has actually been around for more than a century. Alexander Graham Bell—you know, the guy
who invented the telephone?—was the first to observe that electromagnetic waves could
induce sound waves when applied to materials. But the technology that’s started to emerge
and be refined in just the last decade takes that initial observation and makes it into
something that could seriously revolutionize medicine. Imaging veins and arteries this way, for example,
can tell us more than ever before about changes in someone’s circulation, or abnormalities
in blood flow related to cardiovascular diseases. We can see how tissues are faring after surgeries,
we can see what kind of effect a drug is having…the applications are really kind of stunning when
you start to think about them all. Because not only can this technology be used
to image tissues at extremely high resolution. You can also introduce a foreign material,
like a contrast dye or a specially designed nanoparticle, to see things you might not
be able to otherwise. These substances can be tailor-made to bind
to certain kinds of cancer cells or other forms of gene expression. And then you can tune the laser to the wavelength
absorbed by that contrast or nanoparticle, giving you an extremely detailed and accurate
pictures of how a disease manifests in your body. And I guarantee you’re not ready for what’s
maybe the coolest part: there are several companies that are making versions of this
technology that’s highly portable, and are designing software that uses machine learning
to identify different structures on the image for the user. Both of these developments mean it’s possible
that some patients could use this technology themselves to monitor their own health and
things like progress during recovery from a condition or a surgery. Technologies like this are an exciting look
into how we’re improving our understanding of our own bodies and the way we can look
at and treat them. I love how physics and engineering and computer
science and medicine are all coming together to make this happen, I think it’s a great
example of how big leaps in science are, by necessity, cross-disciplinary collaborations
that, by the sound of it, will continue to improve lives all over the world. If you want even more on new and improved
ways that we can monitor our own health, check out this video here, and make sure you subscribe
to Seeker for all your medical innovation news. If you have another emerging medical technology
you’d like to see us cover, let us know down in the comments and as always, thank you so much for watching and we’ll see you next time.

100 thoughts on “A New Laser Technology Can See Inside Our Bodies Like Never Before”

  1. Fun fact, Alexander Graham Bell was a fan of eugenics and "eliminating the deaf race" even though his mother and wife were both deaf and he and his father taught in deaf schools.

  2. Bell did NOT invent the telephone… it’s was Nikola Tesla that invented telephone and this and most other technology we use today as well!

  3. This technology was introduced by a British inventor by the name of Royal Raymond Rife…over a hundred years ago. All substances has a resonance frequency which can manipulate (vibrate) it's physical structure. Case in point, a high pitch sound will shatter crystal glass.

    Rife tested his theory on different materials and gotten similar results with sound waves, radio waves, light waves, etc….

  4. In the future, me buying one, take one scan on the crouch; Oh the blood vessels in the 'thing' is tiny, needs more blood vessels!

  5. lol who ever has tripophobia is scratching the shit out their heads . Lol I am . Hahahaha yucky !!! That vainy Hans was so YUCKY I WANT TO SCRATCH IT OUT ! OR DIG IT OUT !!!! YUCKY!!!!

  6. A device similiar to this was being developed for weapon use. And its used in New research to find things not seen by eye. Nasa research

  7. Just to throw a spitball, Bell was not the true inventor of the telephone, he stole the prototype from Meucci. The US Congress finally recognised that in June 2002.

  8. Wow, seems very promising! Reminded me of those Med-Bays' on that movie 'Elysium' (2013) where the system would scan and automatically identify the problems in the body! In the movie the device would go on and cure the decease, but I'm sure we'll get there someday. Hopefully it will be available for everyone and not only the ones 'up there'!

  9. this isn't new.. it's been used a long time ago to light up cancer cells.. and the scientist behind it got shunned at the time.. do the research there's nothing new about it.. it was suppressed for years..

  10. Physicists are still expanding the outer limits of what the hell is even feasible or imaginable. GG, physics and mathematics. GG.

  11. Maren's contributions to science education are so profound, I have to mentally prepare myself for them 😅. I add them to watch later, then after about three days I can finally embrace the glory within them! You're appreciated as much as they are ❤️

  12. So how does laser penetrate the outer skin without damaging the tissues, and remain enough energy to cause sound waves inside?

  13. I watched the video, but didn't understood anything, because the whole time I was actually watching her. That girl is SOO CUTE and her voice is hypnotizing
    Damn I need a girlfriend…

  14. That was really interesting.
    My bathroom scale uses "body impedance" measure lot's of "quantities" in my body. Things like water quantity, fat weigh, muscle weight, bone weight, etc. I'd like to know what the science is behind this technology and how accurate it is.

  15. Lol Rad Tech here. Everyone thinks theyre a medical professional/ scientist in the comments

    Leave it to the actual people in the field to speculate

  16. What I'm actually looking forward to is in several years when this gets miniaturized and can be put into a computer or cell phone to do a sub dermal image to replace pass codes, fingerprints, face scans, iris scans, etc.

  17. This is not a new technology. It's been around for almost 20 years. I used it 15 years ago to image contrast agents in rats. The only thing that's new is that now you're starting to see commercial products.

  18. They should implement this technology into a humanoid robot that we purchase through a company that must first go through a thorough experiment process required by Government agencies before being approved to the manufacturing stage. These humanoids will help us in our homes, and if anything were to ever go wrong the robot can use this tech to identify the cause of harm located in the body, and send a distress signal to a specialized dispatcher unit, they then will send that message along with its diagnosis to the Emergency Medical Services (EMS). This will increase the probability of you surviving because the paramedics will be able to know what your conditions are and will be better equipped and more prepared to handle the situation they are about to encounter.

  19. You are the most interesting women i ever seen in my life, and atractive too, do GYM fisical work this can mantain your musical voice energy for a lot of years more.

  20. Alexander Graham Bell didn't invent the telephone, he just had enough money to stole the idea and patent it as it was his.

  21. FDA trials and NIH research will be necessary for any clinical significance. We are two to five years from helping patients. Please support the research at our universities, hospitals and government laboratories so that this breakthrough can move forward. Contact your local congressional representative and your senators to support this type of research.

  22. Woah…. doesn't this mean we will also be able to, say for example, check a fetus's organs as their developing? That would be huge for the understanding of how that process works since we still actually know so little about how a fetus develops and whatnot (I'm not a scientist/doctor tf do I know. It's still super interesting)

  23. If this can work, itll revolutionize more than just medical scans, because this would make treasure hunting so much easier

  24. We've had this technology centuries ago what do you think brought down the walls of Jericho vibration sound waves saser technology look at a dragonfly and how it defies gravity lies to the left fly to the right really fast goes backwards and forwards a crease electromagnetic field in the opposite effect because of vibration it disturbs electromagnetic field that's being created and allows it to travel so fast imagine if you did that to a plane or ship imagine how fast you could actually go and you wouldn't feel no G forces inside oh that's just top secret not anymore study the dragonflies underneath a microscope they did it back in the 1920s all ITS Technologies old just like in the 1940s they already came up with the railgun that's mounted on battleships that we use today remember once you have the blue train you can change it and evolve it over and over again how do you think we learned how to create tools and weapons sticks and stones and it was always men that did these things because women wouldn't play in the dirt mended and they did that naturally without ever being told and then went off to explore that's why men will always be the wife creators the designers The Architects not women are more social creatures and do other things and usually men create these things for convenience for women because we actually care about them but unfortunately feminism doesn't give a s*** about men or women keep allowing that s*** to go on holding Society back and down we have this technology for a very long time government just doesn't like to wake up with slaves because if you have this technology and the resources to create your own s*** and figure out that you can terraform a planet it's just like every other recipe once you have the blueprint you can teroforma world and you could leave this one behind and be there within weeks or months on a new planet not controlled by a bunch of petulant morons

  25. please let me know if your butthole is darker than your normal skin or the same shade. i'm interested to know. use lasers if you want to, but a regular cell phone images is fine too

  26. It's 2019, this is one of those videos you watch in 2024 and realize this is an old ass video and this still technology still isn't available for use in the real world.

  27. Lol… guess a lot of you did not hear the part where she's describing the process. The tissue is blasted with laser and it heats up n expands note. Also the idea has been around for a long time note . Why do you think it's not been explored already? The ans is how often should you be exposed to the so called laser hourly daily weekly monthly yearly etc. We live in an era of just in time science where health n safety tests are being over looked all because of profit. Currently no health test have been done on 5g yet they are steam rolling ahead with it. Be careful what you wish for. You may just actually get it 😊😉

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