Diagnosis Solutions for Breast Cancer PatientsBy Miriam Bello | Thu, 10/07/2021 - 12:02
Breast cancer is the most prevalent type of cancer. Millions of women live with this disease, significantly impacting their quality of life. October has been dubbed Breast Cancer Awareness month in an effort to promote prevention and treatment. Even though advances have been made, more effective solutions are needed to reduce cancer prevalence
Cancer is the third leading cause of death in Mexico, representing 14 percent of registered deaths, according to figures from the Ministry of Health. Of all types, breast cancer is the most prevalent, causing 7,000 deaths a year.
Age-standardized breast cancer mortality in high-income countries has dropped by 40 between the 1980s and 2020 at an annual rate of 2-4 percent, according to WHO. However, low- to middle- income countries still have to strengthen their efforts to reduce mortality rates. If mortality rates were lowered 2.5 percent per year worldwide, 2.5 million breast cancer deaths would be avoided between 2020 and 2040.
Mortality rates are linked to treatment advances. “Breast cancer treatments can be highly effective, achieving survival probabilities of 90 percent or higher, particularly when the disease is identified early,” says WHO. To date, there are several treatment options, including surgery; radiation therapy for control of the disease in the breast, lymph nodes and surrounding areas (locoregional control) and systemic therapy (anti-cancer medicines administered orally or intravenously) to treat and/or reduce the risk of the cancer spreading (metastasis).
Proper treatment is also based on timely diagnosis. This is essential to overcome breast cancer and even though the market already has strong options, innovators are working to introduce user-friendly options to promote an easier diagnosis. One of the most innovative solutions introduced in the Mexican market is Thermy’s device to detect breast cancer in its early stages using a thermal camera, resulting in a painless process with faster results. This test is based on a photograph taken from a distance of 2m. “It is a private test and the nurse who does it never sees the patient exposed,” explained Andrei Merino, Co-CEO and PR of Thermy, to MBN. Doctors have the opportunity to see the scan in real-time on a monitor in front of them. The study is completely transparent and safe as it does not use radiation. This AI-based device, according to Merino, has over 90 percent sensitivity at the moment with potential to raise this to 95 percent. “So far, we have not had any false negatives,” he added.
Grupo SOHIN is also working on the introduction of a genomic diagnosis solution for breast cancer patients based on “molecular diagnostic tools that optimize resources and improve the response to treatment,” Juana Ramírez, CEO and Founder of Grupo SOHIN, shared with MBN. According to Ramírez, these tests have offered precise results and allow to create personalized care and prevention plans for patients.