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January 22, 2006

Nuclear medicine imaging could revolutionize breast cancer diagnosis

An innovative new imaging technique developed by Italian and Belgian researchers called somatostatin receptor scintigraphy is signaling something of a breakthrough in medical imaging technology, according to a recent article published in the Journal of Nuclear Medicine.

By CBR Staff Writer

According to a study undertaken by the Journal of Nuclear Medicine, this new nuclear medicine imaging technique, which looks at how the body functions at the molecular level, may provide near-immediate selection of breast cancer patients for endocrine therapy, and offers a new tool in fighting the disease.

The major advantage presented by the technology is its ability to detect the hormone sensitivity of a woman’s tumor. Once determined, health providers can then decide on the most effective treatment for the patient.

Bieke Van Den Bossche of Ghent University Hospital in Belgium, told Nuclear Medicine, Our technique allows a fast and accurate selection of breast cancer patients for hormonal treatment…With conventional imaging techniques, it takes at least three to six months to evaluate if the disease is regressing, stabilizing or progressing. Obviously, every day that a patient goes without efficient therapy is a day too many.

Although the technology is in the very early stages of deployment, it has the potential to revolutionize the medical imaging that is used to diagnose breast cancer sufferers.

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