Teen Develops Bra To Help Detect Breast Cancer After His Mother Beats Diagnoses – Twice
A young teen personally saw the sad effects of breast cancer firsthand. His mother went through the harrowing disease twice. Watching his mother struggle with breast cancer was heartbreaking for him. However, he channeled his pain and frustration into inventing something that could help detect this cancer in the future.
A Traumatic Experience
In 2013, Julian Rios Cantu found out that his mother had breast cancer. Unfortunately, her symptoms were not detected early enough. Thankfully, she survived, though she ended up having a double mastectomy, removing both of her breasts. She also went through a lot of physical and emotional suffering.
Though Julian’s mom survived, the entire experience was heartbreaking and distressing. However, it brought Julian and his mom even closer than before. It also made Julian realize that something needed to be done to prevent the disease. “I realized that if that was the case for a woman with private insurance and a prevention mindset, then for most women in developing countries, like Mexico where we’re from, the outcome could’ve not been a mastectomy but death,” he said in an interview.
Creating A Solution
Julian began doing extensive research on breast cancer to create a bra that could detect the disease early. He patented the idea alongside his friend and business partner, Antonio Torres, and created a company, Higia Technologies to produce the product.
The bra, named EVA, is described as “the first intelligent, portable, and non-invasive wearable designed to detect abnormalities in the thermal patterns of the breast, an indicator for the possible presence of breast cancer.” Since tumors give off more heat than regular tissues, the bra uses thermal sensors to pick up on any potential tumors in the breasts.
Testing It Out
Julian, Antonio, and the workers at Higia Technologies have tested the EVA bra extensively with clinical trials involving 153 women, 33 of whom had already been diagnosed breast cancer. So far, the EVA bra has 81.7% specificity.
The company is still working to conduct new trials in Mexico but has been getting incredible support so far. Higia has received funding from different investors including Y Combinator, an American company responsible for Dropbox, Airbnb, Stripe, and Reddit. There have also been some pre-sales for the EVA bra which will be coming to the market very soon.
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