Plastic can save your life

Health |  < 1 min. read

Modern medicine is making more and more use of modern plastic.  Almost every day, in fact, there seems to be something new.

Take the recent report about the MasSpec Pen, a handheld device that can identify cancerous tissue during surgery in 10 seconds, more than 150 times as fast as existing tech. Developed by the scientists and engineers at University of Texas at Austin, the tool gives surgeons “precise diagnostic information about what tissue to cut or preserve, helping improve treatment and reduce the chances of cancer recurrence.”

That’s the science.  Here’s what the science means: “’If you talk to cancer patients after surgery, one of the first things many will say is ‘I hope the surgeon got all the cancer out,’” says Livia Schiavinato Eberlin, an assistant professor of chemistry, University of Texas at Austin, who led the team. ‘It’s just heartbreaking when that’s not the case. But our technology could vastly improve the odds that surgeons really do remove every last trace of cancer during surgery.’”

And in that work, plastics now plays a part.