Breast cancer is one of the deadliest forms of the disease known to modern science. The American Cancer Society suggests that there is a 1 in 8 chance for a woman to develop breast cancer in the US. It’s because of these staggering numbers that doctors routinely tell women to get breast examinations. MRI scan images can be instrumental in detecting the incidence of cancer. Catching it early gives women a chance by enabling their doctors to start battling the disease before it becomes too entrenched. These MRI scans can take a long time and be inconvenient, but recent research has shown that doctors may not need to spend so much time on these scans to get precise and concise results.
Cutting the Time Down Significantly
In a recent meeting of The International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine, the University of Cambridge School of Clinical Medicine in the United Kingdom submitted a very encouraging study. The team asserted that the abbreviated scan performed as well as a standard MRI scan, with a much shorter time needed to generate results. The Cambridge team suggested that this reduced time could improve the acceptability of MRI scanning for patients and potentially reduce costs. The accuracy of abbreviated MRI scans has come to the forefront in the past few years. The journal Medicine reported in April of this year that abbreviated MRIs offered high accuracy in detecting the recurrence of cancer in recovering patients. However, these new results from the Cambridge team focus on the detection of new diseases, not recurring ones that initial MRI scans may have missed.
A New Way to Detect Cancer?
The team started by analyzing thirteen studies published through July 2019, each dealing with abbreviated MRIs and breast cancer screening. The literature analysis suggested that the sensitivity of the specificity of abbreviated MRIs were not significantly different from full-protocol MRIs. Additionally, the studies went on to note that Abbreviated MRIs delivered similar accuracy in results. The limitations stem from the small amount of available research in the area, but the team was confident that they would see more research done to back up their suppositions.
Shorter Scan Times with Accurate Results
As many patients of Express MRI know, even fast MRI scans take some time to complete. However, if abbreviated MRI scans can offer decent results, then it’s possible that those who need scans may be able to get them without such a long process behind it. Abbreviated MRIs need fewer images to decide, which also means there’s less processing time between taking the images and getting a result. If this research turns out to be correct, we could see a much faster MRI industry on the horizon alongside a better way to detect breast cancer. As with all cancers, the sooner doctors recognize it, the more of a chance the patient has of surviving it. Abbreviated MRIs might give us a way to get more testing done in a short space of time.