According to a recent Medgadget article, MIT researchers have created a wearable ultrasound system designed so women at high risk of breast cancer can conduct self-administered ultrasound scans at home. The technology could also enable patients with early-stage cancer or suspicious lesions to monitor their progress. The system is integrated into a bra as a piezoelectric ultrasound scanning module, offering various scanning orientations to cover the entire breast. This innovation aims to address the challenge of interval cancers, aka tumors that arise between routine clinical scans, which account for about 30% of breast cancers and can be more aggressive.
Given that early-stage cancer detection significantly improves survival rates, this home monitoring system could play a crucial role. It offers convenience and real-time monitoring, helping patients identify changes in breast tissue. Individuals at high genetic risk for breast cancer might find this technology especially useful, potentially delaying or avoiding preemptive mastectomies. The system could enhance screening frequency and contribute to raising survival rates to as high as 98%. A video with more information can be seen here.