A revolutionary breakthrough in cancer treatment could be in your doctor's office sooner than you may think. Scientists at Massachusetts General Hospital have developed a blood test that will be able to detect a single cancer cell amongst millions of healthy ones, according to the Associated Press
"This is like a liquid biopsy that avoids painful tissue sampling and may give a better way to monitor patients than periodic imaging scans," Dr. Daniel Haber, chief of Massachusetts General's cancer center and one of the test's inventors told the news source.
The blood test could prove to be more effective than standard screening methods such as mammograms, colonoscopies and other conventional methods. Early-detection is the greatest ally of doctors and the new test could determine whether treatments are working much sooner.
"If you could find out quickly, 'this drug is working, stay on it,' or 'this drug is not working, try something else,' that would be huge," Haber told the news source.
The new test working in conjunction with traditional methods could double the chances of detection and allow doctors new opportunities in regard to research.
According to the American Cancer Society, women should begin undergoing annual mammograms at age 40.