Breast cancer detection using high-density flexible electrode arrays and electrical impedance tomography.
While mammography remains the gold standard for breast cancer screening, additional adjunctive tools for early detection of breast cancer are needed especially for young women, women with dense breast tissue and those at increased risk due to genetic factors. These patient populations, along with those populations for whom mammography is not readily available, require alternative technologies capable of effectively detecting breast cancer. One such adjunctive modality for breast cancer detection is Electrical Impedance Tomography (EIT). It is a non-invasive technique that measures tissue conductivity by injecting a small current through a surface electrode while measuring electrode voltage(s). The surface measurements are then used to reconstruct a conductivity mapping of the tissue. The difference in conductivities between healthy tissue and that of carcinoma enable EIT to detect cancer. Electrical Impedance Tomography does not subject the patient to ionizing radiation, and offers significant potential for detecting very small tumors in early stages of development at a low cost. While prior systems have demonstrated success using EIT for breast cancer detection, the resolution of the reconstructed image was limited by the spatial resolution of the sensing electrode array. Here, we report the use of higher density (3mm spacing) flexible micro-electrode arrays to obtain tissue impedance maps. Accurate EIT reconstruction is highly dependent on the spatial resolution and fidelity of the surface measurements. High-density, flexible arrays that conform to the breast surface can offer great potential in reconstructing higher resolution conductivity maps than have been previously achieved.
Campisi, MS; Barbre, C; Chola, A; Cunningham, G; Woods, V; Viventi, J
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