Vicki Freeman lay perfectly still inside a
tube-like machine as ultrasound waves beamed deep into her cancerous
breast. Little bursts of heat signaled the beams were cooking
her tumor to death -- without a mark or cut to her skin.
Freeman is one of the first women to try a novel medical experiment
to see if this "focused ultrasound therapy" might one day offer
a noninvasive alternative to breast cancer surgery.
It will take years of study to prove whether cooking tumors works.
But as women already clamor for less disfiguring breast surgery,
pilot experiments at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston,
Texas, and Brigham & Women's Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts,
signal the latest in a growing trend: research on ways to make
cancer removal not just less invasive, but to quit cutting patients
"If you think about surgery, it's sort of medieval," says Dr.
Darrell Smith, a Harvard University radiologist conducting Brigham
& Women's study. "We're trying to get more elegant in the way
we do this. It's kind of Star Trek in a way."
Yet it raises a serious safety question: Are doctors trying to
make tumor removal too minimal, particularly for diseases like
breast cancer where surgery can work very well? After all, scientists
already know that some younger women undergoing lumpectomy get
too little tissue cut out for cosmetic reasons, leaving them
more vulnerable to cancer's return than if they had properly
sized lumpectomies. Plus, if nonsurgical methods do prove safe,
they'll require more complicated machinery -- and thus will be
more expensive -- than a simple lumpectomy.
Thanks to Cable News Network
Update on Radiofrequency Ablation-Small Breast Cancers
RCT High Intensity Focused Ultrasound Ablation:BCa
Presentation, 19th Annual Intl
Breast Cancer Conference
American Roentgen Society
Information, more to come
and a LINK
Three-D Power Doppler Ultrasound & Ovarian Ca
LINK: "Acute trauma to the breast occurs in seat belt injuries producing hematomas that may result in permanent scars. Chronic trauma in the form of environmental toxins may predispose to breast cancer".
"The combined use of breast sonograms with Doppler blood flow study will provide early detection of most highly malignant cancers resulting in life saving early diagnosis and sparing the patient radical surgery. This result requires special training by the physician & state of the art sonograms".
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