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Margins refer to the rim of tissue around a cancerous tumor that is removed. The goal is to get “clean” or “negative” margins, meaning there are no remaining cancer cells around the edges of the tumor that could be left in the body with the potential to spread.
While surgeons are continuously working to lower the percentage of repeat surgeries (also called re-excisions or re-operations), studies show it is not uncommon—approximately 1 in 5 for some types of cancer. In breast cancer surgery, 23% of lumpectomies4 require another surgery to get clean margins, while positive surgical margins are found in 11.5% of thyroid cancers and 21% of prostate cancers.5
Yes, the Perimeter S-Series OCT imaging device was FDA cleared in February 2021 and became commercially available in the United States that year.
Perimeter’s device uses high-definition Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) imaging to visualize margins at the cellular level in the operating room. Images have 10X higher resolution than ultrasound and X-ray and 100X higher than MRI, down to 2mm depth. This gives surgeons the clarity they need during the surgery, as they work to achieve clean margins in an effort to avoid another procedure.
Rather than a one-size-fits-all approach that could potentially remove more tissue than is needed, this technology allows surgeons to visualize your margins and tailor your care.
Yes. Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT), developed out of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 1991, has been successfully used in ophthalmology, cardiology and dermatology for decades. The Perimeter S-Series OCT is the first device to use OCT for margin visualization in the operating room.
Yes. Your surgeon will remove the tumor, and it will be taken to the device for scanning. There is no radiation, and the device does not touch the patient or enter the sterile area in the operating room.
Each scan takes 1-2 minutes or about 15 minutes overall, depending on your specific case. The scans are incorporated into the routine workflow of your operation, with limited impact on overall surgery time.
No. OCT adds to your surgeon’s confidence level in real time during surgery, prior to the Pathology report, which is typically final 2-7 days after your surgery. Pathology remains the “gold standard” as a final assessment of margin status to confirm whether or not cancer remains in the margins.