The importance of early diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer is well understood. Regular X-ray mammograms are the most frequently used diagnostic imaging test for identifying cancerous changes in the breast. However, this method fails to show up to 20% of breast cancers, especially in women with very dense breast tissue. Another method, X-ray computed tomography (CT) provides better results, but there is some concern about the amount of radiation involved. A new imaging tool, Analyzer-Based X-ray Imaging, creates images that are 7 times better and uses only 25% of the radiation that a CT does.
Researchers from Finland, Germany, and France joined together to study the use of Analyzer-Based X-ray Imaging on lab samples of cancerous breast tissue. The new imaging method was able to detect diffuse cancer that is otherwise difficult to identify by traditional imaging methods. This is important because diffuse cancer is the second most common type of breast cancer. Additionally, Analyzer-Based X-ray is very sensitive to details that otherwise could only be seen in microscopic tissue studies. The next step is for the study to move forward to clinical testing. For now, it appears that Analyzer-Based X-ray has the potential to be a ground breaking new imaging tool for the early detection of breast cancer.