Qualify for a free subscription to HealthLeaders magazine.
Technology: Fluorescence-Assisted Resection and Exploration System (FLARE)
Manufacturer: Currently licensed by GE Healthcare
Purpose: To aid physicians in determining whether they've removed all of a patient's cancerous tissue and to do so without harming surrounding structures.
Early adopter: Still in clinical trials; however, FLARE has been used to successfully visualize organs and body fluids of mice and map the lymph nodes of pigs, all in real time.
What it does: The portable system, consisting of a near-infrared (NIR) imaging system, a video monitor, and a computer, uses chemical dyes called NIR fluorophores that are designed to target specific structures such as cancer cells when injected into patients. When exposed to NIR light, which is invisible to the human eye, the dyes light up the cancer cells and are shown on a video monitor.
Potential Improvement: More comprehensive surgical removal of breast, prostate, and lung cancer whose tumor boundaries can be difficult to determine at advanced stages.
What's Next: The first human clinical trials began in summer 2008; broader clinical use of the device could occur within five years, the researchers estimate.
- 3 Management Lessons from a Supermarket Debacle
- As Medicare Advantage Cuts Loom, Disagreement Over Program's Stability
- Medicare Advantage Carriers See 'No Choice' But to Accept Cuts
- Physicians to Appeal 'Docs v. Glocks' Ruling in FL
- CA Fines 8 Hospitals for Medical Errors
- Centralizing the Revenue Cycle Protects the Bottom Line
- Revenue Cycles Get a Boost from Simple JPEG Files
- IOM Identifies GME Problems, Calls for Finance Changes
- Employers Weigh Risks, Benefits of Private Exchanges
- Premium Subsidy Fight Creating Uncertainty for Hospitals, Health Plans