Every year, 4,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer, making it the most common form of cancer afflicting women in the country.
Thankfully, with the increase of awareness on the disease, many know that early detection is paramount, with a survival rate of up to 90 percent if it is detected in stage one. However, for a large number of women, conventional breast cancer screening methods can be daunting, uncomfortable, expensive and even painful.
For the past three years, Mobecomm Technologies Sdn. Bhd. has been changing that with its revolutionary medical imaging technology device 'MEIK'. The result of five years of work by Mobecomm's business partner Mobecomm Inc. in Montreal, Canada and its principals SIM-Technika of Russia, MEIK allows for the screening and diagnosing of any abnormalities of the breasts, via Electro Impedance Tomography (EIT).
Different cells and tissues in our bodies have varying electrical conductivity profiles. Cancer cells are no exception, being 10 to 60 times more conductive than the average cell. EIT, therefore, measures the conductivity profiles of the cells, allowing MEIK to aid in diagnosing abnormalities, such as the presence of cancer cells in the breasts.
But why is this better than other forms of breast screenings, such as mammograms, ultrasounds and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)? MEIK is painless. It does not employ radiation and so the absence of any radioactive elements makes this method safer for the patient, not to mention easier to be operated by even nurses. Although targeted towards women aged between 25 and 60, all women, even those pregnant, may undergo screening with MEIK. It is convenient as it can be taken to a customer's home and the procedure conducted there. MEIK is also accurate, highly effective and, at one tenth the cost of a mammogram, more accessible. Images the MEIK produces can be viewed in 3-D and digital format and can be sent via email, mobile phones and tablets.
And it is not just Malaysian women that Mobecomm wants to help. Founded in 2009, it has already conducted screenings for over 5,000 women nationwide and plans to facilitate breast cancer screenings for women throughout the ASEAN region. To allow greater access to its device, Mobecomm is working with several well-known medical and imaging centres, clinics and universities, such as PrimaNora Medical Centre, Sidiq Specialist Medical Centre, Daya X-Ray Centre, Klinik Mediviron, Puchong Fertility and Women Specialist centre, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) and Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM). Mobecomm is currently conducting clinical trials with UiTM and UKM, the results of
which are to be published.
This is just the beginning. Fazilah sees a huge potential in the screening service market with up to 8.1 million woman between 25 to 60-years-old, and more than 6,000 private clinics in the country, as well as some 350 medical centres and hospitals. The market is set to grow further as awareness of the cancer continues to increase. Thus, Mobecomm projects more collaborations by next year and an increase in screening sales to up to 2,000 sales each month.
This projection is expected to grow so that within three to five years, Mobecomm aims to become the leader in providing early breast screening services in Southeast Asia. Within a decade from now, the company plans to have amassed a comprehensive network of partners and customers in hospitals and clinics, and enough revenue to enable it to screen at least one million women. It may also consider its own original equipment manufacturer (OEM), with Malaysia's own MEIK brand of equipment. Perhaps then, says Fazilah, when all targets have been met, will they think of an exit plan.