New tech detects skin cancer faster

Summary:Searching for and analyzing moles for skin cancer is a long process. Here's why that could soon change.

Getting regular checkups is necessary to detect signs of melanoma, a dangerous form of skin cancer, for people with more than 50 moles. Unfortunately, moles don't always pop up on the most obvious parts of the body, making the search for signs of melanoma a tedious one for these higher-risk patients.

But now a new technology can quickly scan and record images of the entire skin surface of patients, making it easier to monitor troubling changes in the skin.

FotoFinder recently unveiled the Automated Total Body Mapping system which can scan the whole body in less than three minutes. In that time, the system will have taken 20 photos from all four sides of the body and compared them with photos from the system. If any new or changed lesions are found, the system highlights those and makes a note of all relevant moles on the body. Then, clinically-approved pattern recognition algorithms analyze the moles and give them a "malignancy score."

"Our skin is a large organ that takes a long time to examine. The new ATBM procedure reduces the effort involved to a minimum," said Andreas Mayer, Managing Director of FotoFinder Systems. "Thanks to the impressive total body photographs, doctors can spot any conspicuous features and changes at a glance. In this way, the system supports the medial expertise of the dermatologist and gives patients more security."

FotoFinder presented the innovative procedure at the Congress of the German Dermatology Society last month.

Photo: FotoFinder

This post was originally published on

Topics: Innovation


Tyler Falk is a freelance journalist based in Washington, D.C. Previously, he was with Smart Growth America and Grist. He holds a degree from Goshen College. Follow him on Twitter.

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