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New Diagnostic Technique – a Potential “Game Changer”

I recently read of a new innovative technique that may eventually help doctors diagnose cancer and mesothelioma earlier than what is now possible.  This new technique called photoacustic tomography was discovered by researchers at the Washington University in St. Louis.  Photoacustic tomography is a new imaging method which relies on light and sound to create detailed color pictures of tumors and cancerous tissue inside the body.  Not only will this new procedure aid in the early diagnosis of cancer, but it will also assist doctors in monitoring the effects of cancer treatment without X-rays, MRIs or CT Scans.

Studies of this diagnostic procedure conducted on animals have shown promising results that photoacustic tomography can easily penetrate the body and give good visuals of tumors deep inside the body that could not be seen before.  Clinical trials for this new technique are in the planning stages but researchers are very excited about its potential.

Dr. Lihong V. Wang, biomedical engineer and leader of the team of researchers at Washington University said that, “This technology is potentially a game changer, both in how we monitor cancer and in how soon we know it’s there.”

Diagnosing Mesothelioma

Mesothelioma can be very difficult to diagnose.  Unfortunately, this lethal disease shows no early symptoms and it can sometimes take doctors weeks to determine a mesothelioma diagnosis.  In addition, because it is a rare disease doctors do not initially consider this diagnosis.  However, early diagnosis is the key to treatment of this disease.  The earlier mesothelioma is diagnosed, the more treatment options that are available to the patient.  Photoacustic tomography shows great ability in aiding in the early detection of cancer and mesothelioma.  This new technology can see deep inside the body where doctors and tests may not be able to detect cancerous growth.

One Day a Cure for Mesothelioma

My law firm and I have been representing clients with mesothelioma for over 30 years.  I have seen firsthand the devastating effects of this disease.  Researchers such as those at Washington University provide us and our clients with great hope.  Early diagnosis of this disease is a key element to one day finding a cure for this devastating disease.