This test identifies suspected cancerous growth and tumor tissue with the use of electromagnetic waves. The primary reason why this test was developed was for patients undergoing lumpectomy. This test would help the surgeon ascertain the amount and size of tissue to be removed to prevent any other additional surgeries after the lumpectomy.
Lumpectomy as a surgery involves removal of cancerous tissue along with a thin margin of healthy cells surrounding the cancerous cells. Once the surgery has been done, a pathologist again examines the tissue to see presence of cancer cells in the margins. Margins devoid of cancer cells are referred to as negative or clean margins and alternatively margins with cancer cells are called positive.
In an ideal situation the surgeon finds out the margin status of cancer cells presence before the completion of the surgical procedure to ensure clean margins at the end of the procedure. Analyzing of the tissue takes roughly a week and if the margin is found positive then an additional surgery called reoperation or re-excision lumpectomy is done. This is not the case in mastectomy, wherein the entire breast tissue is removed.
The benefit of a MarginProbe system is that during lumpectomy within a span of 3 to 5 minutes a surgeon can evaluate the margins and assess the tissue removal. It can be used in DCIS as well as invasive breast cancer. The marginprobe uses the concept of electromagnetic waves which make out difference in normal breast tissue and cancerous growth in the breast.