New screening device for breast cancer

Mehnaz Yasmin

Chennai, November 7: More women are coming forward to get themselves screened for breast cancer because of a new device that does not require them to remove their clothes or be touched by other people, say the manufacturers.

The latest thermography system called Illumina 360, was launched this International Breast Cancer Awareness Week, on October 31 by Cura Healthcare Private Ltd, after five years of research.

“Research dates back to 2009, but the project was started only in 2012. Cura Healthcare got a US patent in June 2017 for Illumina 360”, Programme Manager Aarthee said.

The 360 degree robotic breast thermography system tracks changes in vascular tissues; the breasts are imaged every 15 degrees after temperature is dropped every 5 degrees. The system captures 24 images in a thermally insulated air-conditioned chamber, negating external factors completely. Kannan Neelakanta, Director, New Product Development at Cura Healthcare, said “Not even heartbeat is registered”.

With an accuracy of 97 per cent, the device  has incorporated technologies like an Integrated Touchscreen Workstation, Edge Detection and Auto Detection which removes noise and enables specialists to track changes after every screening. The windowing feature senses heat levels on tissues.

“An abnormality is suspected if the vascular response to the fluctuation in temperature is not uniform”, he added.

Winner of the Best Innovation in Healthcare Device, Ilumina 360 is devoid of pain or radiation. “The accuracy of the existing breast cancer detection systems like infrared thermography and X-Ray mammography  falls below 70 per cent if the breasts are dense and have more adipose tissue. This is where Illumina 360 emerges as a clear winner. We saw plenty of cases where Illumina 360 detected cancer when X-Ray could not,” Neelakanta said.


As much as 49% of all women suffering from breast cancer in Chennai are below 50 years of age with a significant number of patients below 30 years, statistics of Consolidated Report of the Hospital Based Cancer Registry (HBCR) report.


“Illumina 360 is completely safe, so women from 18 years can start getting themselves screened too”, said S Kalyanaraman, General Manager, Key Accounts and Marketing.




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