The Thermal Pulse Decay (TPD) method for the determination of local tissue thermal conductivity and blood perfusion rate is based on a comparison of measured with theoretically calculated temperatures. A sensitivity analysis of the theoretical model is performed. This analysis supports the establishment of an experimental protocol which reduces the measurement errors: An “optimal” measurement time inverval for typical perfusion rates (up to 6 mL/mL/min) was found to be between 3 and 11 s after the heat pulse is turned off. Within this interval, the maximum error in determination of tissue conductivity and blood perfusion caused by experimental measurement errors is expected not to exceed 5 percent. The presently chosen pulse duration of 3 s is in agreement with the analysis as a good compromise between accuracy and excessive tissue heating.

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