Impedance spectra of tumour tissue in comparison with normal tissue; a possible clinical application for electrical impedance tomography

Börje Blad, Bo Baldetorp

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

79 Citations (Scopus)


Electrical characteristics of living tissues have been investigated for a long time in the search for further methods to complement the traditional investigations of pathology and physiology. Tumour tissue has been shown to exhibit a larger permittivity and conductivity than normal tissues. This might be associated with the fact that tumour cells have a higher water content and sodium concentration than normal cells, as well as different electrochemical properties of their cell membranes. To our knowledge only a few contributions on this subject have been published. This study describes an additional application on measurements of the complex impedance of tumour and normal tissues, in order to compare the impedance features of the two tissue types. The tissue sample is placed in a measuring cell in which the temperature is controlled. The measuring cell is connected to an impedance meter able to measure the complex impedance in terms of real and imaginary part curves for frequencies from 1.5 kHz to 700 kHz. The four-electrode principle is used with the current injected by the outer electrodes and the voltage difference measured between the inner electrodes. The current can be altered up to 1 mA. The instrument can be calibrated with known resistance and capacitance networks connected to the input of the instrument in order to minimize the measurement errors. The calibration routine uses a polynomial adaptation and can be applied interactively. Measurements performed by the instrument show promising results. Preliminary results show that this method can be extended to a new application for detection of tumour tissue by electrical impedance tomography (EIT).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)105-115
JournalPhysiological Measurement
Publication statusPublished - 1996

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Radiology, Nuclear Medicine and Medical Imaging
  • Cancer and Oncology


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