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SpectraScience Delivers Cancer Diagnosis System to Mayo Clinic and UCSD/VA for Detecting Esophageal Dysplasia in Patients
Date:9/16/2008

tivity in identifying dysplasia or cancer in the esophagus will be evaluated. The hypothesis that the sensitivity of a WavSTAT-assisted endoscopic examination improves that of standard endoscopy alone will be tested. If this hypothesis is proven, the physician should be able to take fewer physical biopsies, decrease the duration of the exam and minimize the discomfort of the patient.

Background

Acid reflux, or heartburn, is a common ailment known to almost all adults at some point in their lives. As many as 44% of adults in the United States report having heartburn at least once a month; 14% report having it weekly and 7% experience it daily. If heartburn occurs often, or other symptoms such as difficulty swallowing, tissue damage or weight loss develop, a diagnosis of gastro esophageal reflux disease (GERD) is considered. It is reported that approximately 50 million Americans have GERD symptoms. In most cases GERD is benign, however, when GERD symptoms are frequent, i.e., twice per week, or chronic, i.e., five-plus years, a patient should be considered as a candidate to receive an endoscopy of the esophagus to check for a condition called Barrett's esophagus.

Barrett's esophagus is a disease condition of the lower esophagus thought to be caused primarily by GERD. Approximately 10-20% of GERD patients are thought to have Barrett's esophagus. Barrett's is a condition in which the lining of the esophagus changes to a type of tissue similar to that normally found in the small intestine called intestinal metaplasia. Barrett's can only be confirmed by histologic examination of tissue biopsies obtained during an endoscopy of the esophagus.

Because the diagnosis of dysplasia has such a crucial impact on disease management and subsequent patient outcomes, a system that can aid the endoscopist in differentiating between suspect esophageal tissue with dysplasia or without dysplasia in real-time would have great clinical utility.

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SOURCE SpectraScience, Inc.
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