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Detecting electroporation by assessing the time constants in the exponential response of human skin to voltage controlled impulse electrical stimulation

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6 Author(s)
Birlea, S.I. ; Bioelectronics Res. Cluster, NUI Galway, Galway, Ireland ; Corley, G.J. ; Birlea, N.M. ; Breen, P.P.
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We propose a new method for extracting the electrical properties of human skin based on the time constant analysis of its exponential response to impulse stimulation. As a result of this analysis an adjacent finding has arisen. We have found that stratum corneum electroporation can be detected using this analysis method. We have observed that a one time-constant model is appropriate for describing the electrical properties of human skin at low amplitude applied voltages (<30V), and a two time-constant model best describes skin electrical properties at higher amplitude applied voltages (>30V). Higher voltage amplitudes (>30V) have been proven to create pores in the skin's stratum corneum which offer a new, lower resistance, pathway for the passage of current through the skin. Our data shows that when pores are formed in the stratum corneum they can be detected, in-vivo, due to the fact that a second time constant describes current flow through them.

Published in:

Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, 2009. EMBC 2009. Annual International Conference of the IEEE

Date of Conference:

3-6 Sept. 2009