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Optical Transillumination Spectroscopy of Breast Tissue in Pre- and Post-Menopausal Women.

35 Years
75 Years
Not Enrolling
Breast Cancer

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Trial Information

Optical Transillumination Spectroscopy of Breast Tissue in Pre- and Post-Menopausal Women.

X-ray generated images, such as mammograms, rely on the density of tissue within the breast.
Tissue density are believed to be associated with proliferation of stroma and/or
epithelium, which result in an increase in water associated light absorption and a decrease
in lipid associated light absorption. The amount of density of the breast tissue has been
shown to be an indicator of cancer risk. Thus, assessing this breast tissue density is also
an important tool in determining breast cancer risk.

Optical transillumination has been shown to give information about tissue composition and
tissue density. Unlike x-ray mammography which uses ionizing radiation, optical
transillumination uses normal white light and is deemed safe to be used frequently for women
of all ages and therefore can be used for those situations where mammography is not an

Normal white light is shone into the tissue and the light that leaves the breast on the
other side from the source is detected and analyzed. Since the same physiological
conditions that contribute to dense breast tissue, as seen in mammography, also will have
unique optical signatures.

We will compare the amount of this dense tissue from the mammogram, taken with 12 months, to
the density measurements found through the optical procedure. The goal is to be able to
duplicate the information from the mammogram using the transillumination technique. All
measurements are non-invasive and no blood samples or biopsies are required.

Inclusion Criteria:

- Be in good health and able to provide consent

- Be between 35 and 75 years of age

- Have no personal history of breast cancer

- Have had a mammogram at The Marvelle Koffler Breast Centre at Mount Sinai
Hospital within the last 12 months

Exclusion Criteria:

- Have had breast biopsy

- Have had breast augmentation or reduction

Type of Study:


Study Design:

Observational Model: Cohort, Time Perspective: Cross-Sectional

Principal Investigator

Lothar Lilge, PhD

Investigator Role:

Principal Investigator

Investigator Affiliation:

Ontario Cancer Institute, University Health Network, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M5G 2M9; Department of Biophysics and Bioimaging, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M5G 2M9


Canada: Ethics Review Committee

Study ID:




Start Date:

March 2000

Completion Date:

September 2003

Related Keywords:

  • Breast Cancer
  • Optical Transillumination Spectroscopy
  • Transillumination Breast Spectroscopy
  • Breast Cancer Risk
  • Breast Neoplasms