Optical Imaging of Human Breast Cancer
Breast cancer has become one of the most serious epidemic diseases of middle aged women since the incidence has increased over the decade dramatically to one eighth or ninth of a woman’s life time. Over thirty thousand woman die every year from breast cancer. Mortality can be reduced by early cancer detection. While X-ray mammography has been used to screen breast cancer currently, this technique has difficulty detecting breast cancer in some cases. The reasons are as follows: first, its detection ability has been restricted in some cases, as it is mainly sensitive to calcification, and is hard to distinguish between normal fibrotic tissue and cancer. Secondly for woman under the age of 35 years old, X-ray mammogram does not see through breast tissue with sufficient contrast, since young breast tissue is normally fibrotic. Thirdly X-ray radiation itself is carcinogenic, and frequent usage is not recommended. Recently, Magnetic Resonance Imaging has appeared to be a better technology than X-ray for new mammography (1), but it is more expensive and may not be used as a typical screening test at present. For these reasons, we are still seeking a better imaging technique to satisfy our needs for early breast cancer detection.
KeywordsLight Guide Optical Imaging Technique Early Breast Cancer Detection Pulse Laser Light Fibrous Scar Tissue
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