(RxWiki News) It used to be that breast self-exams were something that your doctor urged you to do every month. But very few women and even many healthcare professionals are not adept at feeling slight changes in breast tissue. A new tool aims to change that.
With the help of the National Science Foundation (NSF), MammaCare - the world's most tactually accurate breast model - has been developed to train women and clinicians to detect very early breast lumps. The tool mimics the look and feel of the human breast.
"Learn how to perform breast self-exams."
Mark Goldstein, Ph.D, a founder and chairman of the MammaCare Corporation that developed the technology, said in a NSF video demonstrating the system, "...the human fingers are brilliant little instruments that can actually read 1 mm dots without fail with a little bit of training. It's called braille."
Goldstein continues, "The human hand is capable of detecting changes as small as 3 mm - the size of a pea. And with training, they detect it every time."
The NSF funded a number of tests which were conducted to improve the accuracy of the MammaCare technology. The aim was to enhance the process by which human fingers can be trained to detect quite small lesions.
The MammaCare tool has small and large lesions embedded within the model that healthcare providers are trained to feel.
Goldstein says it took years of research and development to perfect MammaCare to serve as a scientific standard that can be used to teach breast exams.
"You can't palpate a pamphlet but you can train fingers to reliably detect small lesions. We took a private event and made it a standard," Goldman said in the news release announcing the technology.
Glenn Larsen, program director in the Engineering Directorate at NSF, says the organization supported the company to develop a tool that can be used to improve cancer detection methods and education both in the United States and around the world.
To learn how to perform a breast self-exam, please visit the site below.