The light-scattering properties of dental enamel and dentin were measured at 543, 632, and 1053 nm. Angularly resolved scattering distributions for these materials were measured from 0° to 180° using a rotating goniometer. Surface scattering was minimized by immersing the samples in an index-matching bath. The scattering and absorption coefficients and the scattering phase function were deduced by comparing the measured scattering data with angularly resolved Monte Carlo light-scattering simulations. Enamel and dentin were best represented by a linear combination of a highly forward-peaked Henyey–Greenstein (HG) phase function and an isotropic phase function. Enamel weakly scatters light between 543 nm and 1.06 μm, with the scattering coefficient (μs) ranging from μs = 15 to 105 cm−1. The phase function is a combination of a HG function with g = 0.96 and a 30–60% isotropic phase function. For enamel, absorption is negligible. Dentin scatters strongly in the visible and near IR (μs ≅ 260 cm−1) and absorbs weakly (μa ≅ 4 cm−1). The scattering phase function for dentin is described by a HG function with g = 0.93 and a very weak isotropic scattering component (~2%).
© 1995 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: March 8, 1994
Revised Manuscript: July 11, 1994
Published: March 1, 1995
Daniel Fried, Richard E. Glena, John D. B. Featherstone, and Wolf Seka, "Nature of light scattering in dental enamel and dentin at visible and near-infrared wavelengths," Appl. Opt. 34, 1278-1285 (1995)