October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. Thus, it is only fitting that we focus on some exciting technology for the ladies, 1 in 8 of whom will develop breast cancer in their lifetime. The First Warning System by First Warning Systems, Inc. (Reno, NV) looks simply like a sports bra but with a hidden agenda – support breasts, detect tumors. Various forms of bras have been supporting breasts for centuries, but only now does wearing this everyday undergarment may mean one less thing to remember – the self-breast exam. The bra utilizes sensors that can supposedly detect angiogenic activity (measure cell temperature changes created over time by new blood vessel growth associated with developing tumors) and “proprietary software that uses pattern recognition, chronology and artificial intelligence to look for changes in breast tissue that could indicate the presence of a tumor”.
If it actually works, and at a cost less than $1000, it sure seems like a bargain against the Heavenly Star Bra with dual practicality to boot!
From the company’s website:
The system is a non-invasive breast physiology screening system, much more sensitive and much more cost effective than mammography. The platform has applications for both OB/GYN and primary care in-office use, as well as potential use as an over-the-counter (OTC) diagnostic system.
Three preliminary clinical studies in more than 650 women have been completed yielding compelling results, demonstrating an average accuracy of 92.1% (percentage of correct classification), an average sensitivity of 94.7% (true positive cases), and an average specificity of 91.1% (true negative cases). In comparison, the specificity and sensitivity of the gold standard mammogram averages 70% and the accuracy of interpretation is completely subject to the skill and ability of the reading radiologist.
(hat tip: MedCity News)