Cipla, one of the leading pharmaceutical companies from India, announces the launch of a breakthrough screening technology in India today called the ‘No Touch Breast Scan (NTBS); ‘ the first-ever painless, non-invasive and radiation-free breast scanning technique for detecting breast cancer at an early stage. Dr. Shekhar Kulkarni, Consultant Breast Cancer Surgeon, Magnolia Breast Surgery Clinic, Pune said, “Breast cancer is rising rapidly among urban women and is now the most common cancer in cities such as Mumbai and Delhi . Unfortunately most cancers are diagnosed when the disease is advanced leading to low chances of cure. Although Mammography has been available for years it is not used that widely. There are many reasons for it such as lack of awareness, pain and discomfort during the procedure and a concern about repeated exposure to radiation. Welcoming the introduction of NTBS in India , Dr. Rakesh Sinha, Consultant Gynaecologist Surgeon, BEAMS Hospital , Mumbai said, “The No-Touch Breast scan is a painless option for women who wish to get themselves regularly screened. It is of particular use in younger women who have dense breasts and mammography is inconclusive. If a woman shows changes on the NTBS then she is sent for further investigation which includes mammography, sonography etc. At BEAMS Mumbai, of the 41 patients who have undergone the NTBS test, only 1 had to be referred for mammography.”
Thermal imaging has been approved by the FDA several years ago for early diagnosis of breast cancer. With improvements in digital camera technology during the last few years, thermal imaging is fast gaining acceptance. Developed by UE Life Sciences Inc, the ‘No Touch Breast Scan’ is the World’s first fully computerized ‘thermal imaging technology’ with dual IR cameras which can find thermal changes at less than 0.08 deg. C. The NTBS using infrared imaging creates a sophisticated heat-map of the breast without using any radiation. Breast cancer is associated with increased formation of new blood vessels and these show up as ‘hot spots’ which could indicate a cancerous growth.
At Dr Kulkarni’s Magnolia Beauty and Clinic in Pune, the NTBS test was taken by about 165 women and only 12 of them needed further investigation. Mrs. Ambike, an asymptomatic woman who has untaken the NTBS test said, “I had taken a mammography test earlier but it was quite traumatic. With this totally touch-free and quick NTBS test, I would not defer my annual check-up anymore.”
The ‘No-Touch Breast Scan’ would be exclusively marketed by Cipla across diagnostic centres and hospitals in India . It has already been installed at BEAMS Hospital , Mumbai and Indore and Magnolia Beauty and Clinic, Pune and would be extended by Cipla on a requirement-basis to over 20 more diagnostic centres or hospitals across India . Addressing the press, Dr. Jaideep Gogtay, Medical Director Cipla said , “Cipla has been working in the area of cancer by manufacturing drugs for the last 20 years but this is for the first time we have taken a step towards focusing on early diagnosis of breast cancer.
There are 3 NTBS machines available in the US , UK , Turkey and Kazakhstan , but women in India would have greater access to this landmark technology and have more control over their breast health.”
The cost of per NTBS test would range between Rs 800 – 1000, depending on the pricing determined individually by the hospitals and centres.
Cipla laid foundations for the Indian pharmaceutical industry back in 1935 with the vision to make India self-reliant in healthcare. Over the years Cipla has emerged as one of the most respected names not just in India but worldwide. Its state of the art R&D centre has given the country and the world many firsts. This includes the revolutionary AIDS cocktail for less than a dollar a day. With over 40 manufacturing units across the country, Cipla manufactures over 1200 products in 80 therapies.
With a turnover of over US $ 1 billion, Cipla serves doctors and patients in over 183 countries. It has earned a name for maintaining one global standard across all its products and services. Cipla continues to support, improve and save millions of lives with its high-quality drugs and innovative devices. ( www.cipla.com )