A blessing for women – new hybrid imaging device spots ovarian cancer early

Of all the cancers that can affect a woman the most insidious has to be ovarian cancer due to the inability of doctors to be able to easily, and reliably detect it in its early stages. As a result doctors tend to want women who are considered to be at a high risk of getting this kind of cancer to preemptively remove their ovaries.

Well thankfully that may not be the standard course of action in the future due to some researchers at the University of Southern California and the University of Connecticut who have come up with a new imaging device that combines three other known imaging technologies that can spot tissue irregularities that might signal ovarian cancer.

Describing their hybrid device in the September issue of the Optical Society’s Biomedical Optics Express journal, the researchers say they have combined photoacoustic imaging for contrast, optical coherence tomography for hi-res subsurface imaging (called OCT, this is the top image at the right), and pulse-echo ultrasound for deep-tissue imaging (second image) to identify malignant tumors.

The superimposed images (at the bottom of the images) enabled the team to spot malignant tissue (indicated with yellow diamond arrows).

via CNET News

Testing has proven that the imaging works so the next phase of testing will be with live patients using minimal invasive surgery.