Alternative breast imaging undergoes scrutiny

May 18, 2004

Researchers at Dartmouth Medical School are experimenting with three promising new electromagnetic imaging techniques to help detect breast abnormalities. The team examined electrical impedance spectroscopy, microwave imaging spectroscopy, and

Researchers at Dartmouth Medical School are experimenting with three promising new electromagnetic imaging techniques to help detect breast abnormalities. The team examined electrical impedance spectroscopy, microwave imaging spectroscopy, and near-infrared spectroscopy. These technologies use low-frequency electrical currents, microwaves, and infrared light, respectively, to create computerized cross sections of the breast. The differing properties addressed by these technologies promise to help identify specific breast characteristics that differ in normal and diseased tissue. Once the researchers establish normal ranges for specific breast characteristics, they will try to identify data patterns that indicate abnormalities, including cancer. The research is part of the five-year Alternative Breast Imaging Project funded by a grant from the National Cancer Institute.