Will The Methods Be The New Way To Determine Breast Cancer?
Researchers at Ben-Gurion University conducted a study that helped detect two possible methods that could determine if a woman has breast cancer.
The experts used two "nose gas" sensors, one on breath and one on gas-chromatography mass spectrometry, which is a method that tests things in urine.
Research that was published in the Computers in Biology and Medicine journal collected breath samples from 48 breast cancer patients as well as 45 healthy women who served as a control group. Then urine samples were collected from 37 patients who were believed to have breast cancer based on mammogram results. Urine was also taken from 36 women who did not have breast cancer.
Statistical analysis was very efficient, as the breath method was able to detect an accuracy of 95.2 percent ± 7.7 percent of breast cancer when using the electric nose, and urine samples had an accuracy of 85 percent.
Yehuda Zeiri, a professor and member of Ben-Gurion University's Department of Biomedical Engineering, stated in an official press release that breast cancer is tied to tumor detection, which is why methods for recognizing early tumors remain a priority for researchers.
"Our new approach utilizing urine and exhaled breath samples, analyzed with inexpensive, commercially available processes, is non-invasive, accessible and may be easily implemented in a variety of settings," Zeiri explained.
Mammograms Can't Detect Small Tumors
However, mammograms, which is the current method that is used to determine whether or not a woman has breast cancer, cannot recognize small tumors in small tissue. Mammograms are usually 75 percent to 85 percent accurate, but the number decreased from 30 percent to 50 percent for women who are more plump.
Furthermore the only reliable way to find small tumors at the moment is by using a dual-energy digital mammography, but it is pricey and can expose individuals to radiation. Zeiri believes that with more research, commercial electronic noses will eventually be able to distinguish between other cancer types.