Researchers have developed a noninvasive, cost-effective method using IR imaging technology to locate hard-to-find breast cancer tumors. The system consists of an IR camera on a track mounted underneath a cushioned table. It is angled and can be adjusted as the clinician moves it to take images. The team is also using advanced computer simulation technology to do predictive analysis on tumor locations and growth.
The research team has received funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to screen patients and correlate IR images against original MRI images to provide validation of the overall process and the IR imaging technology.
IR imaging technology could improve breast cancer detection by providing a non-invasive, low-cost, fast screening method. IR imaging uses infrared radiation to measure the temperature distribution of the breast tissue, which can reveal abnormal patterns of blood flow and metabolism associated with tumors. IR imaging has several advantages over conventional mammographies, such as being painless, radiation-free, and suitable for dense breasts. However, IR imaging also faces challenges, such as low spatial resolution, high sensitivity to environmental factors, and difficulty interpreting the images. Therefore, IR imaging must be combined with advanced image processing and machine learning techniques to enhance its accuracy and reliability.