Nigerian robotics engineer, Bolarinwa Kemisola, has developed a bra that can detect breast cancer, according to Africa News.
The new device is developed when Nigeria is losing an estimated 17 000 women to cancer every year.
The smart bra contains a total of 14 sensors connected to a USB outlet with cables. The system also includes a phone application where the procedure can be followed.
The new device also helps to raise awareness about breast cancer. The Nigerian scientist stated that she devoted herself to finding a solution to breast cancer on the day her aunt died.
Following the advice of several healthcare professionals and scientists, the first working prototype was ready by February 2021.
The idea is not new.
Three years ago, a Mexican teenager, Rios Cantu, who was a student at the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education, developed EVA, an intelligent bra that detects breast cancer.
The then 18-year-old explained that EVA consists of cups with artificial intelligence sensors. Once they are in contact with the breasts, they measure the behaviour of blood and how it flows through the breast tissue.
The device is placed once a week for about 60 to 70 minutes without interruption and sends the collected data to an app downloadable to a smartphone. In case of finding any irregularities, it requests a diagnosis by the doctor assigned by the user, or a doctor provided by the platform.
According to research, many women in Africa do not know what cancer is and some have been resorting to traditional medicine once they get it.
According to the data of the World Health Organization (WHO), more than 600 000 women died of breast cancer in the world in 2020, and just over 74 000 of them in Africa.
In Zimbabwe, breast cancer is the second most common cancer among women. There were an estimated 2 000 incident cases and more than 900 deaths in 2018, though only a fraction of these patients is documented as presenting to care with a breast cancer diagnosis.