|Summary:||Breasts, being the ultimate symbol of femininity, make breast cancer one of the most traumatic events any woman could ever face. Perhaps it is this sense of pride in these attributes that makes many women reluctant to discuss and share their experiences with breast cancer. Many may feel that their absolute core identity has been shaken, making them less than a woman. The fear and stigma attached to this disease are currently among the major difficulties faced by healthcare providers in convincing women to effectively manage their breast disease. It may leave women feeling isolated and as a result, withdrawing from society and even life- making them feel less than a woman.
Beyond the stigma and mental anguish there is also the tremendous stress of going through a number of surgeries, chemotherapies and radiation therapies, with the risk of treatment failure and recurrence always at the back of their minds.
Fortunately various studies confirm that early breast cancer detection saves lives, reduces medical treatments and costs, and ultimately, gives one hope for a better future. The availability of effective screening reduces the mortality from breast cancer by up to 50%. Most women will be lucky enough to never develop breast cancer, but for the many of those who do, their lives may be saved by advanced detection.
Currently, breast cancer detected at an early stage can be treated appropriately, with most being cured. The role of a health care provider is therefore extremely important, in counselling and motivating women to overcome their fears and come forward for regular examinations. The role of a radiologist is equally important in synergizing imaging modalities towards achieving the best of medical care for the public. These are some of the ways to help and support in the management of the disease and in making the ladies feel no less than a woman.
In order to reach a superior level in early detection and diagnosis of breast cancer, our research team studied various methods to overcome some of the limitations in breast imaging. These methods include Computer Aided Diagnosis techniques involving various existing imaging modalities such as mammogram, tomosynthesis, breast ultrasound, computed tomography laser mammography (CTLM) and thermography of the breast. More rewarding research on newer imaging devices includes the ultra-wide band (UWB) imaging of the breast. Recent usage of a computational model involving Monte Carlo Simulation for early breast cancer detection using wire mesh collimator gamma camera in scintimammography is also gaining interest amongst clinicians.|