Cervical cancer affects the lives of 530,000 women worldwide each year and results in more than 270,000 deaths, with approximately 85% of these deaths occurring in developing countries. The decrease in the incidence of cervical cancer in developed countries has been attributed to regular screening that relies on a multi-visit, cytology-based approach - Papanicolaou (Pap) smear, followed at a later time by colposcopically directed biopsy when indicated, and treatment if necessary. Employing these methods requires dedicated clinic visits for specimen collection, follow up and treatment, as well as a pathology laboratory and skilled staff, which is not feasible in resource limited settings. There is a critical global need for a screening and diagnostic paradigm that is effective in low-resource communities. The desired replacement for cytology and colposcopy would be a low cost, portable and clinically-compatible sensor that can survey the entire cervix and identify suspicious areas for biopsy quickly and non-destructively. We propose to develop a portable, low power consumption spectroscopic device that can be used to obtain accurate and reproducible quantitative measurements of absorption and scattering coefficients with applications to screening of cervical cancers for global health. We will evaluate the capacity and clinical usability of the device in a low-resource setting through a field study in Haiti.
The goal of this proposal is to develop a portable, low power consumption spectroscopic device that can be used to obtain accurate and reproducible quantitative measurements of absorption and scattering coefficients with applications to screening of cervical cancers for global health. The proposed research is significantly relevant to public health due to the potential to contribute to the improvement of cervical cancer, and thus the reduction of mortality rate worldwide.
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