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Breast Cancer Channel
Reported April 1, 2014

Bye, Bye Breast Biopsy?

CLEVELAND, Ohio (Ivanhoe Newswire) – About 1.7 million women will have a breast biopsy each year. It’s an invasive, painful, and costly test that comes back negative about 60 percent of the time. Now, there’s a new way to tell whether a mass is cancerous, and there’s no needle required!

Playing hide and go seek, or playing the piano, when 3-year-old Kadin is around, Grandma Roz is always playing something. 

“I am blessed by all my grandchildren, but this one’s got me,” Roz Sobel told Ivanhoe.

She’s needed the distraction. A few months ago, doctors found a lump on Roz’s mammogram. It was a scary moment for a woman whose mother, grandmother, sister, cousin, and niece all had breast cancer.

“My family has a horrible history,” Roz said.

Typically—women like Roz will need a painful needle biopsy to determine if the lump is cancerous, but she took part in a clinical trial testing a new technology called opto-acoustics.

“The thought is that this will help us determine what’s cancer and what’s not,” Paulette Lebda, MD, Breast Radiologist, The Cleveland Clinic, told Ivanhoe.

An ultrasound with a laser is used to look at the distribution of oxygenated and deoxygenated blood in the lump. It’s essentially a blood map for doctors.

“Usually, benign breast masses can have a different blood profile, or blood map, than cancerous masses,” Dr. Lebda said.

Studies have shown the technique could reduce the number of biopsies by 40-percent, which was music to Roz’s ears.

It turned out her lump was caused by a dog jumping on her, not cancer.

“They knew right then and there that it was from the dog,” Roz explained.

With the opto-acoustic technology, there’s no radiation, no needle, no pain, and no risk to the patient. The technique is being studied in a clinical trial at 16 centers around the country. It will not replace mammograms, but may decrease the need for invasive biopsies by distinguishing cancerous from noncancerous breast masses through imaging.

For additional research on this article, click here.

Sign up for a free weekly e-mail on Medical Breakthroughs called First to Know by clicking here.

If this story or any other Ivanhoe story has impacted your life or prompted you or someone you know to seek or change treatments, please let us know by contacting Emily Farr at efarr@ivanhoe.com.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT:

Andrea Pacetti
Media Relations Manager
The Cleveland Clinic
216-444-8168
pacetta@ccf.org

 

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How to Find a Qualified Mammography Provider

For the nearest FDA-certified mammography provider, or to check the status of your imaging center, call the NCI's CIS at (800) 4-CANCER.

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