MANILA, Philippines - The Chong Hua Hospital in Cebu City has acquired an automated breast volume scanner (ABVS) to offer the first and only automatic volumetric breast ultrasound in Visayas and Mindanao.
The Siemens Acuson S2000 with ABVS from medical equipment supplier HealthSolutions Enterprises Inc. provides accurate and reliable breast cancer screening that can easily detect the slightest lesions in the whole breast.
"Unlike conventional hand-held ultrasound which only spots palpable masses or mammographic abnormalities, automated ultrasound detects everything and covers all parts of the breast. The ABVS can scan the entire breast in fifteen minutes while the results can be interpreted in just five minutes,"" said Dr. Grace Avila, Chong Hua's dedicated, specially-trained breast imaging radiologist.
As one of only two breast imaging radiologists in the Visayas region, Dr. Avila sees up to 20 patients a day at the hospital's newly-opened breast centre which has a digital mammogram and the breast ultrasound. "Some of the patients come here for a second opinion on their ultrasound which have abnormal or negative findings. That's because malignant lesions are hard to detect even on ultrasound," said Dr. Avila.
Studies show the Philippines has the most number of breast cancer cases in Asia. In 2011, there were more than 14,000 reported cases of breast cancer with almost half of the patients dying due to late diagnosis.
For information, call HealthSolutions Enterprises, Inc. Tao Corporate Center, 2291 Don Chino Roces Avenue, 1231 Makati City Tel. No. 8365858 to 62 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What are stem cells? Stem cells are biological cells that can divide and develop into diverse, specialised cell types. In a sense they are generic building blocks that can be artificially grown and transformed into various tissues.
What are the best sources of stem cells? The best sources are bone marrow, peripheral blood and various stem cells from the umbilical cord.
What makes cord blood stem cells unique? The umbilical cord is a rich source of hematopoietic stem (HSCs); cells responsible for replenishing blood and regenerating the immune system. HSCs are known as "precursor cells" as they have the unique ability to differentiate into different types of cells found in the blood, namely: red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets.
In the late 80's, doctors began using umbilical cord blood stem cells to treat diseases that had previously been treated with bone marrow transplantation. These include malignancies (leukemia, myeloma, lymphoma, and a range of cancers), immunodeficiencies, blood disorders (anaemia, thalassemia), and various inborn metabolic disorders.
How is cord blood stem cells collected? The cord blood can only be collected immediately after the delivery of the baby. This procedure is painless and risk-free to both mother and child and takes about three minutes. The blood sample is then tested, processed and subsequently frozen in a cryogenic freezer.
How do stem cells work? Under certain physiologic conditions, they can be modified to become tissue or organ specific cells with special functions. Given their unique regenerative abilities, stem cells offer new possibilities in treating diseases.
Is it safe? Use of your own (autologous) stem cells, like the ones derived from your blood or your bone marrow, is very safe. Several studies have demonstrated support for its safety. The scientific community continues to conduct clinical trials using stem cells to ensure its safety.
What are its side effects, if any? When the treatment is administered via skin injection, you may experience discomfort such as thickening or hardening of the skin at the site of injection. In some cases, stem cells are administered intravenously or directly into the target tissue.
Why should I undergo stem cell treatment? Stem cell treatment gives hope to those suffering from previously considered incurable diseases. Several reports demonstrated its potential in boosting the immune system, controlling the growth of the cancer, or even eradicating the tumour in the cancer patients who have undergone this kind of treatment. Quality of life is also positively influenced. Unwanted side effects from conventional treatment (such as chemotherapy) can also be lessened.
When can we expect to see the effects of the treatment? Patient reactions to the treatment vary: some may benefit from the stem cell after the first two treatments (2nd week), while others may experience improvement a month after complete treatment.
What are the chances that I will be cured? There is no guarantee for this treatment, but several reports indicate that early intervention can provide the best treatment outcome.