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Thursday, November 29, 2007

Israeli Med Tech: Freeze Thy Cancer Lump?

(Image Credit: Israel 21st Century)

When it comes to the removal of a cancerous lump, many patients (rightly) envision being laid out on a table and being cut open like chopped liver.

While using surgery to remove cancer can be somewhat successful, it is often expensive and time consuming for both the doctor and the patient. Now it looks as if some Israeli medical technology may not only make removing these lumps easier, but cheaper as well.

(Israel 21st Century) IceSense provides that solution by offering the hope of efficient treatment in local clinics without the need for hospitalization, recuperation, or scarring. The IceSense mechanism enables the local application of super-cold temperatures and a fine control of the temperature itself. Liquid nitrogen is pumped to the end of a thin needle probe cooling the tip to the extreme cold required for cryotherapy. Utilizing ultrasound, surgeons can then guide the needle to the exact location of the lump and then freeze the unwanted tissue inside the body.

About the same size as a washing machine, the IceSense apparatus can be operated even in local clinics and medical centers. Providing treatment for breast lumps in local medical centers would be a big step towards the current trend in the US to conduct as much surgery as possible in local clinics by using non-invasive methods. This keeps expensive and over-worked operating rooms and teams free for more serious surgical procedures that require a hospital environment.

According to the article, IceSense would cost less than $1,000 which would not only make it affordable for patients, but many health insurance plans as well.

While this technology has been around for over three decades, IceSense it seems makes this technology not only affordable for the masses, but portable to various clinics as well.

Hopefully this device will make it easier for patients with lumps, especially women suffering with breast cancer to seek out treatment, as IceSense would probably leave less scars (if any) compared to a full blown out operation.

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