Novel Imaging Technique: A Better Procedure to Prostate Cancer Detection

Novel Imaging Technique: A Better Procedure to Prostate Cancer Detection

o-DOCTOR-facebookAccording to research by the American Cancer Association, prostate cancer was the main cause of newly identified cancers in men with more than 220,000 people being affected. In addition, among all the types of cancer, prostate cancer came second after lung cancer in the number of deaths in America. More than 27,000 people died of the disease in 2014.

According to their statistics, the disease often attacks older men, 60 years and above. 1 in every 28 men in America will die from prostate cancer.

These statistics show how serious the disease is and why measures need to be taken into consideration to reduce or prevent the disease.

As a result of technological advancements, new technics are currently being developed to help in early detection and prevention of the disease.

In January 6, 2015, a team of prostate cancer experts from different institutions such as University of California and San Diego School of Medicine (SDSM) introduced a new revolutionary technology that significantly increases prostate imaging. The new imaging technology will improve the process through which patients with prostate cancer are dealt with in various institutions.

According to Dr. Rebecca Rakow, a research expert in the Department of Radiology, the new imaging approach is way much better than all the previous techniques especially for small tumors. It is also an exceptional tool for biopsies. Dr. Rebecca was the first author of the study.

According to David S. Karrow, an experienced professor of Radiology at San Diego University, the new imaging technique will give doctors from all over the world an opportunity to accurately detect the extent of the tumor early enough. He also noted that since the process is non-invasive, doctors will have a better chance of predicting the grade of the tumor which will help them determine the best method to treat it.

The new imaging technique has been hailed as a better alternative to the previous standard known as the Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). Contrary to the new technology, the MRI process involves the injection of the patients with a sharp agent to detect the flow of blood. The principle behind this is that greater blood flow is usually very important in growing cancer cells and tumors. When the injection is made, it will detect the speed of flow of the blood and compare it with that of the surrounding cells. It will also show the shape and nature of any tumor that could be present in the cell. Patients undergoing this process suffer from intense pain.

The unfortunate fact of using this technique is that many tumors are not different from the surrounding tissues. As such, using the MRI technique, it is very easy to avoid detection which could have a major effect to the patient.

Another technique is called diffusion MRI. This technique has been very common with the identification of brain cancer by analyzing the diffusion of water. It works on the principle that cancer tissues are usually heavier than tissues with no cancer. This makes them more resistant to water. The main challenge of this procedure is that the results can be distorted by the magnetic field.

The Restriction Spectrum Imaging Magnetic Resonance Imaging technology

Experts from the University of California and the University of San Diego made a presentation on what they are calling Restriction Spectrum Imaging Magnetic Resonance Imaging (RSI-MRI). This is the newest procedure to solve the challenged that other forms of MRI have. It solves the problem by correcting the magnetic field distortions and thus providing accurate results. It also achieves this by focusing on diffusion of water within the tumor suspected to be cancerous.

According to Professor Nathan White who was the assistant project scientist and co-inventor of the technique, the procedure is more accurate as it plots the location of the tumor and its extent.

Apart from the accuracy of the final result, the RSI-MRI technology is important because of its ability to predict the grade of the tumor. This is based on the idea that high grade tumors are associated with higher restricted water volume in the cancer cell.

Professor Robert Reiter from the Urology department at University of Los Angeles pointed out that by being able to foresee the grade of the tumor, the RSI-MRI project will solve major problems to physicians as well as to patients. It will save the patients time and money by providing accurate results (thus avoiding the increase of many false-negative results) and predicting future grade of the tumor.

The project was funded by various institutions such as the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging, the Department of Defense and the American cancer Society among others.

The introduction of this technology comes a few months after oncologists from the University of San Diego introduced the first MRI technology. According to Amondo Lopez, the new technology is the future of cancer detection and treatment which will save millions of lives in future.

>Learn more about prostate cancer 

>Learn more about the prostate gland


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