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Surprising Science

Smart Bra Detects Cancer Long Before Tumors Are Noticeable

With three years of testing behind it, the bra could be on the market in the US by 2014 with FDA approval.

Article written by guest writer Kecia Lynn

What’s the Latest Development?

Nevada-based First Warning Systems has created a bra that uses sensor technology to detect subtle temperature changes that take place as blood vessels grow and feed tumors. The data collected is fed into pattern recognition software, which can help identify possibly tumors long before they’re big enough to appear on a mammogram. The bra has undergone three clinical trials with over 600 participants, and is ready to go to market in Europe starting in 2013. With FDA approval, it may be available in the US as early as 2014.

What’s the Big Idea?

According to the company’s Web site, tumors can grow for up to 12 years in a woman’s body before they are surgically removed. The bra’s accuracy record of 92 percent beats the 70 percent normally found in typical mammograms, and its eventual cost is expected to be an improvement over the cost of mammograms as well. Not only is the bra “non-radiogenic, non-invasive, and non-toxic,” it basically serves as a continuous exam, which is beneficial considering that currently one in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point in their lives.

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