Cancer Detecting Tests

Cosmetic SurgeryA study has been done that was small, but successful in showing that a breath test could be done that cold detect cancer. Not only could it detect breast cancer, but it also was able to tell the difference between the four most common types of cancer out there. These were bowel, lung, prostate and breast cancer. Another positive result, such as the age of the patient, if they smoked or not, their gender and their life style did not skew the test either.

The results were posted in the British Journal of Cancer. The hope is that cancer patients will be able to be detected much earlier. Many GPs will only see a few cancer patients during the life of their career. Plus diagnosing these patients can be difficult. However, the earlier the detection the better the cancer can be treated when it is at an earlier stage. This also means that recovery is more likely as well too.

Chemicals are emitted from cancer as it grows. The study conducted found that these chemicals could be found when using gold nanoparticles that are found in the breath. The co-author of the study from the Technion Israel Institute of Technology, Professor Abraham Kuten, feels that there is an electronic nose that distinguish between healthy and non-healthy breath. Plus, he went on to say that it can tell the difference between the different types of cancer as well. He added that confirming these results by doing a large scale study means that this type of technology could be used to diagnose cancer in the early stages. Especially since it is simple to use and there is imaging to use as well. This also could mean that relapses could be found sooner and the patient could be monitored during treatment using it.


The study was performed on 177 volunteers. There was a mixture of healthy participants, as well as others that had been diagnosed with bowel, lung, prostate and breast cancer. Though the study was small, further tests need to be performed on a larger group to determine if it is effective in the detection of cancer. However, the implications of the study are optimistic. The study showed that a breath test could be effective in detecting cancer. Plus, if the methods are improved in the early diagnosis of cancer, along with improved methods for treating cancer, this could significantly cut back on the cancer death rate.

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