Breast cancer touches many people every year, and it is not just women. The National Cancer Institute estimates that 207,090 new cases of breast cancer will be diagnosed in women in the United States alone in 2010, and an additional 1,970 cases in men. Deaths are projected to be 39,840 in women. There are also a lot of misdianosis.
A professor at Manchester University is bringing hope to women worldwide with his new innovation--a portable real-time breast scanner. Using radio frequency technology, the scanner can show either malignant or benign breast tumors on a computer screen in real-time. Scanning in a hospital to detect breast cancer is not a pleasant experience.
The beauty of the device is that it is simple to use, hook up to your laptop and you can see real-time imaging and the scan is even accurate if women are wearing a bra. Imagine making this available in the developing world due to its affordability and portability. The portable scanner is about the size of a lunch box. It is a great idea, although it can use some design.
Unlike mammography, which presses a woman’s breast (that’s a painful experience for most people), the scanner works when a woman places her breast in a cup. While mammography detects density, radio frequency works on dielectric contrasts between diseased and normal breast tissue. As soon as the breast is placed in the cup, any abnormality, including a tumor, shows up in red on the computer screen. That’s because the sensor can detect the difference in tissue contrasts, with malignant tissues having a higher permittivity and conductivity than normal tissue. Introduction of the new portable scanner for breast cancer detection could be a tremendous breakthrough for women, allowing them more accurate, faster, and easier access to screening. Professor Wu submitted his invention to the IET Innovation Awards, and winners will be announced in November.
Another interesting idea is using art to help cure breast cancer. British artist Samira Harris and Samsung hope to do just that with “Everyone is Art,” the first giant collaborative artwork to be made and auctioned for breast cancer. “Everyone is Art” is a re-creation of the face of Botticelli’s famous painting, “The Birth of Venus,” featuring the faces of more than a thousand men and women collected through a website.