- Imagin Medical Inc. has designed a system to improve the visualization of bladder cancer during minimally invasive surgery that will display, simultaneously, white and blue light images side-by-side, to help surgeons more easily identify and locate cancerous tumors for removal
- The company’s i/Blue Imaging System(TM) has the potential to make bladder cancer detection and removal more efficient and accurate, as well as reduce recurrence rates and health care costs, targeting a global bladder cancer market estimated to reach $4.71 billion by 2026
- The company’s proprietary system has entered the manufacturing stage with their partner Lighthouse Imaging, an FDA registered and ISO 13485:2016 certified manufacturer. Imagin expects to have the final design-for-manufacturing model ready to demonstrate at the American Urological Association (“AUA”) meeting in September 2021
Bladder cancer has a one of the highest recurrence rates, with approximately 50% of patients likely to relapse, making it one of the most prevalent and expensive cancers to treat. A primary contributor to this high recurrence rate is the difficulty surgeons may have in seeing and clearly locating all of the cancerous tumors and their margins. If cancerous cells are missed and not removed, the cancer can recur.
Surgeons treating early-stage bladder cancer often use a cystoscope, a long tube with a camera and light at the end, inserted through the urethra to explore the bladder. Using white light illumination, the cystoscope displays the bladder wall as well as protruding (raised) tumors so that the surgeon can see and, with additional instrumentation, remove cancerous tumors.
However, some bladder cancer tumors are non-protruding (flat) and their margins may be difficult to see and might be missed by the surgeon. In 2010, a system was introduced that uses a special fluorescing contrast agent, hexaminolevulinate hydrochloride (“HAL”), together with blue light illumination, to cause protruding and flat tumors, as well as their margins, to glow pink, making the cancerous tissue easy to see. Called blue light cystoscopy (“BLC”), this approach offers a significant improvement in bladder cancer detection. Studies show that BLC use can help remove up to 25% more tumors (https://ibn.fm/Jb90R).
However, to properly navigate within the bladder the surgeon needs to see the white light image that shows the bladder wall, as well as the blue light image that shows the highlighted cancerous cells. Current technology shows only one image at a time, requiring the surgeon to constantly switch back and forth between the white and blue light images. The switching process makes orientation and navigation withing the bladder a challenge for surgeons. This is one reason that hospitals and doctors have been very slow to adopt BLC, in spite of its significant advantages.
That’s what makes Imagin Medical’s (CSE: IME) (OTCQB: IMEXF) patented i/Blue Imaging System(TM) so important. It will directly address this problem by displaying real-time white and blue light images simultaneously, side-by-side, removing the challenge of constantly switching and reorienting. The surgeon will see the bladder wall alongside the cancerous cells, making navigation far easier and more accurate and, overcoming the primary weakness of the traditional BLC system. In addition, unlike current BLC technology the i/Blue Imaging System will adapt to most endoscopes on the market.
With this major roadblock removed, Imagin believes its i/Blue Imaging System will expand the adoption of BLC and lead to more successful surgical outcomes, with the potential of and fewer recurrences of this notoriously stubborn and expensive cancer.
For more information, visit the company’s website at www.ImaginMedical.com.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to IMEXF are available in the company’s newsroom at https://ibn.fm/IMEXF
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