Optical microscopy suffers from multiple scattering (MS), which limits the optical imaging depth into scattering media. We previously demonstrated aberration-diverse optical coherence tomography (AD-OCT) for MS suppression, based on the principle that for datasets acquired with different aberration states of the imaging beam, MS backgrounds become decorrelated while single scattering (SS) signals remain correlated, so that a simple coherent average can be used to enhance the SS signal over the MS background. Here, we propose a space/spatial-frequency domain analysis framework for the investigation of MS in OCT, and apply the framework to compare AD-OCT (using astigmatic beams) to standard Gaussian-beam OCT via experiments in scattering tissue phantoms. Utilizing this framework, we found that increasing the astigmatic magnitude produced a large drop in both MS background and SS signal, but the decay experienced by the MS background was larger than the SS signal. Accounting for the decay in both SS signal and MS background, the overall signal-to-background ratio (SBR) of AD-OCT was similar to the Gaussian control after about 10 coherent averages, when deeper line foci was positioned at the plane-of-interest and the line foci spacing was smaller than or equal to 80 µm. For an even larger line foci spacingmore »
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- Optics Express
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- National Science Foundation
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