Pancreatic cancer is one of the most aggressive cancer forms out there with patients only having 9% chances of living. There are not many treatments to guarantee a happy ending especially if it is not detected in its early stages. A new research has developed an app which can detect early signs of cancer.
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Researchers from Washington University have created an app which can detect early signs of pancreatic cancer. An early symptom is yellowing eyes and the app was created to detect it. The app analyzes the eyes and it is supposed to spot elevated levels of bilirubin (bile). So far the app has had 87% success rate during the first clinical trials.
The name of the app is BiliScreen and it uses the camera of the smartphone to analyze the yellow part of the eyes. This could be an alternative to the standard test which is a blood test, but pretty costly.
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The app will be presented on the 13th of September in Hawaii and it could be the next discovery to detect early signs. The app is based on earlier work made by UW’s Ubiquitous Computing Lab, which developed BiliCam. BiliCam is used to detect jaundice in babies.
The white part of the eyes is sensitive to changes in bilirubin and the app can detect signs that are no visible with the naked eye. This sign can predict pancreatic cancer, hepatitis or Gilbert’s syndrome.
A clinical study was done to test the app with 70 subjects. The app was used together with a 3D printed box which controls the eye’s exposure to light.
Discovering pancreatic cancer in early stages is very important because usually when patients experience symptoms is usually too late.