A recent study performed by the University of Leicester and Imperial College London discovered that a new blood test could help spot early signs of breast cancer. Thanks to these new discoveries women will be able to replace breast screenings with a simple blood test, says Sky News.
Researchers at the University of Leicester told the press that a simple blood test could be more effective in discovering breast cancer than other methods that have been used so far, such as, mammograms. The new method could even help doctors determine whether a breast cancer patient is going to relapse or not and what drugs should be used to treat the tumor they are suffering from.
These findings will be subject to a long clinical study which will be performed in UK’s largest screening clinic at Charing Cross Hospital in West London. Doctors will compare the DNA markers in the blood of women who have breast cancer and those who don’t to establish whether early signs of the disease could be spotted in their blood samples. If the results of the study are positive, women could replace annual breast screenings with a simple blood test.
Professor Charles Coombes from Imperial College London is convinced that the answer to a woman’s health condition lies in her blood samples. He further explained that the current study is mainly interested in finding out how early can breast cancer signs be detected using blood analyses. The team that Coombes is supervising has only been preoccupied about breast cancer, but there are other projects saying blood tests could be used to identify other types of cancer, such as, bowel and lung.
Scientists hope their study could become a standard procedure in NHS as soon as possible. They are convinced that patients’ lives will be greatly improved if they no longer have to have mammograms each year. Moreover, using the blood test method would enable doctors to better monitor the evolution of their patients’ medical condition after they have surgery and treatment.