3D Laser Scanning Used to Detect Skin Cancer

3d laser scanning makes your decorations even more fun

Nobody likes to wait.  When you just had a job interview and are eager to find out the result, you will probably have trouble sleeping at night.  When you just took an important exam and the scores won’t be out for weeks, the wait will be nerve wracking. But all that is nothing compared to the wait that some have after they have been tested for skin cancer.  Knowing that the results could be life or death, and knowing that it will be weeks before you know the answer, the feeling would be unbearable. Thankfully, things are being done to get rid of that wait time, and we aren’t just talking about days, but second.  Methods using 3D laser scanning to detect skin cancer are being researched to reduce wait times down to practically real-time.

vivosight detects if your skin cells are healthy

The name of the European group working on this project is ADVANCE, which stands for Automatic Detection of Vascular Networks for Cancer Evaluation. They are working on a device called VivoSight, which is able to use 3D laser scanning of blood vessels to detect whether or not they are cancerous or healthy.  Modifying a technology that has been used for retina scans, called optical coherence tomography, they are able to take 3D scans of blood cells under the skin. These 3D scans reveal the shapes of blood cells. Since cancerous blood cells and healthy blood cells can be distinguished by their shapes, the presence of cancer can be detected right away. 

Warning: Some images of skin may be disturbing. Viewer discretion advised. 

identify cancer within 30 seconds

This method has a great advantage over traditional methods for detecting skin cancers. Traditional testing methods are not only costly, but they have terrible wait times. With this new 3D laser scanning method, doctors can detect abnormalities and examine cancer development on the spot, so that it can be determined immediately if the cancer can be removed or what drug treatment needs implemented right away. This also relieves the patient from the anxiety of not knowing the test results.  Even if the news is bad, it is better to know sooner than later.  

3d laser scanning shows if cancer is spreading

This technology will also help doctors detect whether cancerous cells have moved to other parts of the body or not.  By scanning light patterns of moving blood cells, they can determine if the cancer is spreading throughout the body.  This can be done immediately and does not require the tens of thousands of dollars that common biopsy methods require.  That is a huge benefit for the patient. 

Tens of thousands of people die from skin cancer every year.  This is definitely an area that needs our best and brightest innovations to help people fight against it.  3D laser scanning is just one way that is helping doctors detect cancer as soon as possible so that people can get the care they need.  We have also yet to see what possibilities the future holds for 3D laser scanning technology in the medical field.  Such technologies may have other benefits for sufferers such as burn victims and amputees.  Hopefully we won’t have to wait long to see.  

Keep reading: more articles about 3D laser scanning

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